The lineup of Cessna aircraft currently flying in the world today spans from the humble Cessna 150 to the near-supersonic Citation Longitude.
The cost to acquire a Cessna is as varied as its product offering. From a humble $28,000 for a used Cessna 150 to an eye-popping $28 million for the top-of-the-line Citation Longitude. But there is more to the cost of owning a Cessna than the sale price.
As a corporate pilot with time in almost all the Cessna models, I find that they are worth every penny. From safety to the reliability, comfort, and luxury, flying a Cessna is as pleasurable as being a passenger.
Single Engine Aircraft
Some of its most popular aircraft, while no longer in production, continue to generate demand in the secondary market. A Cessna 150, built toward the end of its career and sold for $7000 in the seventies, now fetches between $40,000 and $60,000. Hourly operating costs average between $40 and $50 per hour.
The Cessna 162 Skycatcher was not the next in line to be developed. Instead, it was first manufactured in 2009. The Skycatcher was designed primarily for training and the general aviation market. But because it was not popular, it was discontinued not long after with less than three hundred units sold.
There are still a few Skycatcher available on the used market. They fetch an average of $70,000. Hourly operating costs average between $50 and $60 per hour.
Not long after the first two-seat 152 came the four-seat Cessna 172. The slightly larger aircraft increased the shoulder room and increased the amount of fuel the aircraft could carry. From 22.5 gallons in the 152 to 40 gallons in the 172.
This allowed the 172 greater range with a higher Gross Weight of 2200 pounds versus the smaller 152’s 1600 pounds. The aircraft entered the market with a price tag of $9,000.
Sixty years later, the Cessna 172, which is still in production, rolls off the factory floor with an average price of $275,000. A used one ranges between $30,000 and $180,000. Hourly operating costs average between $150 and $180 per hour.
The Cessna 177, which is a larger version of the C172 came with the Lycoming O-320 which produced 180 hp. It allowed the C177 to fly at a top speed of 124 knots. It was a complex aircraft that was a little more airplane than the easier C172. The plane was not as forgiving as the 172 and soon became unpopular.
While there is nothing wrong with the plane, coming in behind the easy-flying 172 destined its failure. Only a little more than four thousand planes were built. They are still available today in the secondary market. Prices range between $110,000 and $140,000. Hourly operating costs average between $40 and $50 per hour. Hourly operating costs average between $90 and $110 per hour.
Another popular Cessna single-engine aircraft in the company’s lineup is the Cessna 180. Appearing first in 1953, it eventually spun variants like the 182. With fixed tricycle gear, the 182 was well received. It had more power and better streamlining than its predecessor. The 182 Skylane is still currently in production, having sold more than twenty thousand aircraft to date.
The 182 comes with a Continental O-420, 180 horsepower engine. It can reach a top speed of 145 knots while burning 14 gallons per hour. The latest 182 retails for just over $650,000 while a used one can cost anywhere from $60,000 and $450,000. Hourly operating costs average between $80 and $120 per hour.
The Cessna 188, while looking like it might be a variant of the 180, is not. It is a series of single-pilot agriculture aircraft built by The Cessna Aircraft Company built in 1966 and ended production in 1983.
Its gross weight is 3300 lbs and now costs $175,000 in the secondary market. While the plane looks nothing like the 180 or any of its variants, Cessna used the 180 as the platform to build it.
Cessna stopped building the 195 in 1954 but there are a number still available today on the secondary market. They cost between $140,000 and $200,000. Hourly operating costs average between $100 and $120 per hour.
The 205 is a six-seat single-engine aircraft that came into service in 1962. It has a Continental six-cylinder IO-470, generating 260 horsepower. The 205 has a maximum cruise speed of 160 knots at 16,000 feet.
With the ability to cruise at 146 knots and top out at 15,000 feet, the Cessna 205, which is still in production, sells for $400,000 while a used one ranges between $80,000 and $300,000. Hourly operating costs average between $150 and $180 per hour.
While being a single-engine Cessna, the 208 Caravan is a single-engine turboprop. The Caravan is widely used in rough terrain as it is built to land on unpaved fields. It is also certified for single-pilot operations while being able to carry a large payload.
FedEx is the main user of Caravans, using them to deliver packages to remote locations. The aircraft debuted in 1984 and Cessna has produced more than 3000 units since that time.
When configured for passengers it can carry up to fourteen. Its engine develops 745 shaft horsepower and gives it an MTOW of 8000 pounds, a maximum range of 1000 nautical miles at a service ceiling of 25,000 feet. It cruises at 175 knots.
A new C208 sells for $2.45 million while a used one can be found for a price ranging between $1.3 and $1.9 million . Hourly operating costs average between $900 and $950 per hour.
The C210 is a single-piston-engine high-performance aircraft with variable pitch prop and landing gear. The earlier models came with a Continental IO-470 generating 260 horsepower. The new models now come with a Continental IO-520L.
Production began in 1957 and ended in 1986 with over 9,000 units built.
The aircraft requires only one crew and can carry five passengers. It has an empty weight of 2300 pounds and a gross weight of 4000 pounds. The aircraft has a service ceiling of 17,300 feet and a top speed of 174 knots.
The aircraft has a 90-gallon fuel capacity and burns 15 gallons per hour giving it six hours of endurance.
The current market price of a used Cessna 210 built circa the ’80s ranges between $330,000 and $400,000. Hourly operating costs average between $240 and $300 per hour.
Cessna’s family of multi-engine aircraft was built for reliability, cost-effectiveness, and ease of operability. Every one of Cessna’s aircraft, whether single, multi or jets, incorporates this philosophy in their design and layout.
One of the oldest of Cessna’s twin-engine aircraft is the Cessna 310. Built in 1954, it was the first twin in production after the second world war. In its time, over five thousand were built. Cessna ceased production of the aircraft in 1980.
Its popularity was rooted in the aircraft’s slick design that allowed it speed while allowing a 2000-pound useful load. With low operating costs, it soon became a favorite of the air charter operations that sprang up in the wake of World War II.
The aircraft is powered by two 285-hp Continental IO-520 engines. They consumed 30 gallons per hour while carrying 102 gallons, giving it just over a three-hour range. However, the aircraft can handle modifications that increase fuel capacity to 207 gallons without additional airframe modifications.
The cost of a used 310 currently averages between $100,000 and $140,000. Hourly operating costs average between $340 and $380 per hour.
The 320 was a direct descendant of the 310. It was powered by a turbocharged version of the Continental, the TSIO-470 B engines with counter-rotating props. There are three and two-bladed props for this model. It burns 28 gallons per hour flying at 190 knots. It was Cessna’s first turbocharged aircraft.
The aircraft is designed to carry 133 gallons of fuel. Its useful load is 1800 pounds while its MTOW is 4,990 pounds.
The 320 entered service in 1961 and reached its end in 1968. It was replaced by the Cessna 310 Turbo. The cost to acquire a C320 today averages between $60,000 and $70,000. Hourly operating costs average between $350 and $400 per hour.
The 340 is distinguished from Cessna’s earlier models by the inclusion of the round portal windows. An indication that the aircraft is pressurized. It was the first of Cessna’s line in the twins to allow higher altitude operations.
The turbocharged engines, better at higher altitudes, allowed the aircraft to climb to a service ceiling of 29,800 feet, even higher than its single-engine turboprop, the Caravan. The 340 has an MTOW of 5990 and can carry five passengers. It requires one crew. The aircraft came into service in 1971. Cessna seized production in 1984, having built more than 1300 units.
It currently sells on the secondary market at a price range of $160,000 and $200,000. Hourly operating costs average between $350 and $400 per hour.
The Cessna 336 Skymaster is one of a kind and the only Cessna aircraft offered in an in-line engine configuration. It has one engine in the nose and one in the rear of the fuselage. The advantage of this is in the event of a single engine failure, the tendency to roll to the dead engine is significantly reduced.
However, the most important operating advantage this twin engine had over other on-wing twin engines was that there was no VMC, or minimum controllable speed like other twins that have a VMC that they cannot descend below.
The Skymaster was introduced in 1963 and continued production until 1982. In that time, nearly 3000 units were built. Used, it sells for between $55,000 and $75,000. Hourly operating costs average between $240 and $300 per hour.
The Cessna 422 was one of the early Cessna models targeting corporate flight. It was first brought to market in 1962 and was built until 1968, eventually being replaced by the 401 and 402 variants.
The 422 has a top speed of 233 knots and a service ceiling of 26,000 feet. While the 411 is not pressurized, its sister, the 421, is. The 421 has a service ceiling of 30,000 feet. The 411 has a range of 1000 nautical miles. Its gross weight is 6500 pounds and it burns 43 gallons per hour at 25,000 feet cruising at 75% power. The 411 has the ability to carry 175 gallons.
The Cessna 411 can be found in the secondary market for about $75,000. While the 421 can be found for a price between $80,000 and $100,000. Hourly operating costs for both average between $350 and $450 per hour.
Cessna manufactured the 402 and its sister, the 401, between 1966 and 1985. They are capable of carrying between six and ten passengers, requiring only one crew. The aircraft can be reconfigured to an all-cargo aircraft by the removal of the seats.
The two models were not pressurized, primarily to decrease the cost of purchase and ownership while allowing them to address the needs of the charter market.
The two models can be obtained on the secondary market for between $350,000 and $450,000. Operating costs average between $500 and $650 per hour.
Cessna 408 Skycourier
The Skycourier is a high-wing, twin turboprop aircraft that can be used in its all-passenger configuration, all-cargo configuration, or a mix of the two. In the passenger configuration, it can take up to 19 passengers with room for bags. It only requires one crew to operate.
The aircraft is powered by two PT6As producing 1100 horsepower each. It has a four-bladed counter-rotating prop. The aircraft is certified up to a ceiling of 25,000 feet and a range of 960 nautical miles. Its MTOW is 19,000 pounds.
The aircraft is only available from the factory at this point with a price of $6.8 million for the cargo version and $7.3 million for the passenger version.
The Cessna 425 carries seven passengers and one pilot. It is a pressurized business aircraft offered by Cessna beginning in 1980. After four hundred units were built, Cessna ended its line in 1986.
The 425 is a turboprop aircraft with two 425 horsepower engines built by Prat and Whitney. Pressurized, it has a service ceiling of 33,000 feet and a maximum cruise speed of 210 knots. The aircraft has an MTOW of 8600 pounds. With a fuel capacity of 366 gallons or 2488 pounds and a burn rate of 600 pounds per hour for the first hour and 400 pounds per hour at cruise.
The Cessna 425 is available on the secondary market for between $450,000 and $700,000. Its operating cost averages between $650 and $800.
Cessna labels all its jet aircraft as part of the Citation series. There are currently six in production. However, the Cessna Citation series goes all the way back to 1969 with its Citation I which is no longer in production but still available on the secondary market.
The M2 is Cessna’s entry-level jet. It is as easy to fly for new jet pilots as it is to afford for those stepping into the world of private jet travel. With clean lines and a cozy interior, the M2 is capable of carrying 6 passengers and one crew.
The aircraft comes with an aft lavatory and five seats in the passenger cabin along with an aft baggage compartment. In the cockpit, the pilot is treated to advanced avionics, including the Garmin 3000 package.
The M2 is powered by two Williams FJ44-1AP engines that produce 1965 lbf of thrust each. The M2 has a service ceiling of 41,000 feet and a max cruising speed of 401 knots. Its maximum range speed is slightly lower at 323 knots. MTOW for the M2 is 10,700 pounds.
The M2 has an average operational cost of $1400 per hour. A brand new M2 costs $4.8 million while a used one can be found between $3.5 and $4 million.
While arguably an entry-level jet with a slightly larger cabin, the CJ3 is an update to its original Citation Jet. The CJ3+ offers a seating arrangement for nine passengers and an additional thousand-pound allocation for baggage.
The CJ3+ has a service ceiling of 45,000 feet with a max cruise speed of 416 knots. It can carry 4710 pounds of fuel, giving it a range of 2000 nautical miles. Its MTOW is 13,870 pounds.
The aircraft is still in production and costs $10 million for a 2022 model. A used one averages between $5 and $8 million. Hourly operating costs average between $2500 and $3000 per hour.
The CJ4 Gen 2 is a mid-level jet with a spacious cabin built for 10 passengers and a thousand pounds of baggage. With its advanced avionics and flight management, the cockpit can be managed by a single crew member safely.
The Citation CJ4 Gen 2 is powered by two Williams FJ44-4A engines, each producing 3,621 lb of thrust. During the cruise phase, it consumes 600 lbs of fuel per engine per hour. It carries a maximum of six thousand pounds of fuel. The CJ4 has a service ceiling of 45,000 feet with a max cruise speed of 451 knots. It can carry 5,828 pounds of fuel, giving it a range of 2,165 nautical miles. Its MTOW is 17,100 pounds.
The aircraft is still in production and costs $11.5 million. Used, it can be purchased for between $8 and $10 million. Hourly operating costs average between $2900 and $3100 per hour.
The XLS Gen 2 is Cessna’s advance into premium executive travel with two cabin zones. The aircraft is configured spacious for twelve passengers and boasts an internal baggage compartment of up to 10 cubic feet and a dedicated baggage compartment in the rear capable of carrying an additional 800 pounds.
The XLS is powered by two Pratt & Whitney 545B engines that produce 3991 lbf of thrust each while consuming 292 gallons per hour. The XLS has a service ceiling of 45,000 feet and a max cruising speed of 441 knots with a range of 2100 nautical miles. MTOW for the XLS Gen 2 is 20,200 pounds.
Its average operational cost is between $3800 and $4200 an hour while its purchase cost is $17 million. You can find used ones for between $9 and $12 million depending on age, condition, number of hours, total number of landings and market conditions.
The Citation Latitude offers a stand-up cabin with luxurious seating for nine in a dual-zone configuration. It is currently the best-selling mid-size business in the market. The cockpit is equipped with advanced avionics, including touch screen glass displays for maximum safety.
The aircraft comes with two Pratt & Whitney 306D engines churning out 5700 lbf of thrust each and is powered by FADEC, full authority digital engine control, allowing the Latitude to be landed autonomously. The Latitude has a maximum cruise speed of 446 knots and a service ceiling of 45,000 feet. It has a range of 2700 nautical miles with four passengers and an MTOW of 30,800 pounds.
Its average operational cost is $2650 an hour while its purchase cost is around $15.5 million. Used, you can expect to pay between $7 and $12 million.
The Longitude is Cessna’s most recent addition to the Citation line. It is also its premiere offering, designed for twelve passengers but can take four a distance of 3,500 nautical miles.
Its cruise speed tops out at 483 knots. The interior cabin, divided into two zones takes into account the needs of the key passengers on cross-continental flights allowing privacy and luxury.
The Longitude comes with two Honeywell HTF7700L turbofans that produce 7,600 lb of force per engine. The Longitude has a service ceiling of 45000 feet while maintaining a cabin altitude of 5,950 feet, keeping the occupants of the aircraft refreshed and alert when arriving at their destination. The Longitude has an MTOW of 39,500 pounds. It requires two pilots in the cockpit.
The aircraft operates at $3,000 per hour with an annual fixed cost of about $500,000. The current purchase price for the Citation Longitude is $30 million. For a used Longitude, you can expect to pay between $20 and $25 million.
About THE AUTHOR
After spending years watching every video I could find about flying, I finally scratched the itch and got my pilots license. Now I fly every chance I get, and share the information I learn, here.Read More About Joe Haygood