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Cessna launches diesel-powered turbo Skylane


Responding to concerns that avgas is growing more expensive and harder to find in some parts of the world, Cessna used this week’s AirVenture to unveil a Jet A-powered version of its Skylane. The turbocharged diesel Skylane uses a 230-horsepower Safran engine that burns 11 gallons per hour in cruise flight. Not only is Jet A often more than a dollar less per gallon than avgas, but the diesel Skylane will burn 30 to 40 percent less fuel than the conventional Skylane. The new diesel Skylane will start deliveries sometime after March 2013, at which time it will replace the avgas-powered Skylane. It is priced at $515,000, including the Garmin G1000 glass cockpit. The new Skylane is the first single-engine piston plane to be available with a diesel engine, Cessna said, though similar engines have been available on small twins like the Diamond TwinStar for several years. Cessna said the new Skylane will cruise at 155 knots and have a range of more than 1,000 miles.