The Top 10 Single Aircraft for 2013 PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 21 December 2013 22:36

The Top 10 Single Aircraft for 2013

If you’re looking for a single-engine aircraft, the first thing you need to do is to clearly define what you will use it for. This rule gives you a more realistic chance of actually enjoying your experience as an aircraft owner. Once you’ve figured out the distance you’ll typically travel, your need for speed (you need it for longer trips), and the number of people and the amount of cargo you’ll be carrying, only then can you narrow down your choices.

If you’re a first time aircraft buyer, you need to know that the price of the aircraft is just one of the factors that will affect your checkbook. You also need to think about fuel and oil, maintenance, hangar rent, and insurance. This is one reason why single aircraft can be considered better buys than twin-engine birds—single aircraft are simply lighter on the wallet, yet they can be used for a wide variety of purposes.

Here are some models you’ll probably want to take a look at, since they’re among the best:

  1. Cessna 172. It may be a bit strange to start off a 2013 single aircraft list with one that seems to have been in the industry since the Wright brothers, but any list of single aircraft tends to include the Skyhawk. It’s just about ideal for everyone, and the current 180 hp model is still Cessna’s pride and joy. The climb is great and with a full load you can attain 120 knots in cruise. It’s widely recognized as easy to fly and it can be used for so many purposes.
  2. Cessna 182. This is the super-dependable Skylane, and it rules the roost among 4-seater family planes in the US. After a climb of almost a thousand fpm, you can rely on 135 knots with no problem. The turbo version is great, as it boosts the performance considerably, with lower travels being faster and more efficient.

  3. Cirrus SR22. There’s a reason—or more accurately, several reasons—why this is a consistent bestseller in general aviation. It’s a very comfy ride, whether you’re in the air for the whole day or you’re just out for a short hop. You’ve got twin cabin doors and side stick controls, and the interior was designed with the BMW 5-series in mind.

  4. Piper Mirage PA46-350P. This is the aircraft that propped Piper and prevented it from going under back in the turbulent 1990s. The modern version of the Mirage has 40 more hp and can carry an extra 200 pounds compared to the original. A thousand fpm climb in the first 10,000 feet is followed by a dependable 210 knots. It can be flown by a single person and carry an extra five passengers.

  5. American Champion Super Decathlon. Talk about well-named—this aircraft can suit you if you want to travel in comfort, but you can do some limited aerobatics as well. You get a leisurely 115 knots after a 1200fpm climb, and you can keep from being bored by doing a loop or a roll every now and then.

  6. American Champion Scout. It’s not for aerobatics—it’s for off-airport, rough field work. You can go to places where you won’t be able to take another aircraft.

  7. Gipps AV-8 Air Van. This is a true workhorse. It can carry 8 people, lots of cargo, or any combination of people and cargo. You can maintain about 134 knots from the 300 hp IO-540 Lycoming engine.

  8. Aviat Pitts S2C. If you want an aircraft that seems to obey your thoughts instead of your actions, then this is the bird for you. It serves as a superb trainer for aerobatics students through all the classes, and along the way it does whatever maneuver you want it to do.

  9. Beech G36 Bonanza. Three hundred hp and six seats, with a high-tech glass panel.

  10. Found Expedition. You can carry a load of more than 1500 pounds, and at about 158 knots cruising speed. Adapted to a multitude of purposes, this is one craft that can do just about anything and go just about anywhere.

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 January 2016 22:42