Speed over looks?

March 29, 2011

AOPA Crossover Classic 2011 SweepsAOPA’s 2011 Crossover Classic Sweepstakes Cessna 182 looks a little rough on the outside—dull colors, chipped (and missing) paint. But that isn’t deterring AOPA members who stop by the tent at Sun ’n Fun.

“I’m lookin’ at the speed of it,” said AOPA member Jim Hesser of Dallas, Texas. Hesser, who owns a Cessna 172, even called the Skylane “beautiful.” Maybe he sees its potential.

The 1974 Skylane features a Teledyne Continental Motors IO-550 300-hp engine and three-blade Hartzell propeller, boasting a max cruise speed of 162 KTAS at 7,500 feet with a fuel burn of 18 gph. At 7,500 feet with 50-percent power, the aircraft has a range of 900 nm.

AOPA Crossover Classic 2011 SweepsThe interior and instrument panel are already complete. With a Garmin G500 avionics suite, PS Engineering audio panel, and JP Instruments EDM-930 engine data system, the lucky winner of this sweepstakes aircraft will have a wealth of flight planning and aircraft performance information at his or her fingertips. The aircraft also features L-3 Trilogy standby instruments and a Cobham/S-TEC 55X autopilot.

Despite the rugged exterior, the interior gives the Skylane that new-airplane feel. Fresh out of Air Mod’s interior shop, the seats are covered in beige leather, giving it the look of a new luxury car, according to AOPA member Leif Batey, also a Cessna 172 owner from the Dallas area.

“It’s like a new car [on the inside]—and you don’t see many old planes that look like that,” Batey said of the interior.

Soon, the exterior will be refurbished to make the aircraft look as slick on the outside as it does inside—pilots will be hard-pressed to tell that the aircraft is a 1974 model. The paint scheme already has been selected, and it should be finished in time to show off its new colors at EAA AirVenture this summer.

“I would have a blast. I would enjoy life,” if he won the aircraft, Hesser said, later adding that Batey would “be my new best friend.”

AOPA Crossover Classic 2011 Sweeps