Textron Aviation Marks 65-Year Anniversary Of Cessna Skyhawk’s First Flight

In early June, Textron Aviation celebrated the 65th anniversary of the Cessna Skyhawk’s first fight. Textron bills the Skyhawk platform as the “world standard for pilot training.” (Photo courtesy of Textron Aviation.)

Textron Aviation took time in early June to pay tribute to the 65th anniversary of its Cessna brand’s Cessna Skyhawk model’s first flight that was completed June 12, 1955. The Skyhawk has long been a top choice for numerous pilot training academies and schools in the United States. Textron claims the plane is the “most popular single-engine piston in aviation history,” with 45,000 Skyhawk deliveries to date. The company says this is more than any other aircraft in the industry.

65 Years & Counting

Textron, also the owner of the Beechcraft and Hawker aviation brands, has continued to innovate features and update the Skyhawk with the latest avionics technology throughout the plane’s 65-year history. Last year, Textron updated the aircraft to include Garmin’s G1000 NXi flight deck.

With a four-passenger configuration, the Skyhawk has a 640-nautical-mile (1,185-kilometer) range and top 124 KTAS (230 km/h) cruise speed as made possible by a 180-horsepower Lycoming IO-360-L2A engine.

After its maiden flight in 1955, Chris Crow, Textron Aviation piston sales vice president, says the Skyhawk “quickly established its place as the ultimate training tool,” with 1,100 units delivered in the plane’s first year. Today, the Skyhawk plays a key role in such Textron Aviation pilot outreach programs as Top Hawk, which connects students with factory-new Skyhawks for next-gen flight training. Textron also uses the Skyhawk to donate discovery flights to community organizations to provide youth with firsthand general aviation experiences. Elsewhere, Textron recently inked a contract with the U.S. Civil Air Patrol (CAP) for 11 Skyhawk 172s and 17 Cessna piston engine aircraft overall. Of CAP’s fleet of 550 single-engine piston-based planes, more than 500 are Cessna models.

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Source: Textron Aviation

Posted On: 6/15/2020 3:28:28 PM