AOPA will be closing at 2:30pm ET on Friday, May 26th and will also be closed Monday, May 29th in observance of the Memorial Day holiday. We will reopen at 8:30am ET on Tuesday, May 30th.
Get extra lift from AOPA. Start your free trial today! Click here

Cessna 172 Skyhawk

  • Cessna 172 Skyhawk


  • For many of us, the first exposure we had to Cessna's 172 was the first step-up in size and performance from a two-seat trainer, most likely the Cessna 150/152 series. Back then the Skyhawk seemed huge and powerful compared to the 150/152. Many of us spent hours in 172s giving first rides to friends and family, collecting certificates and ratings, and eventually moving on to bigger and higher-performance rides. Some, on the other hand, continued flying 172s, passing on their knowledge as CFIs or landing jobs as traffic or fish spotters. Over time, people started calling them colorful names like "Chicken Hawk," or "Fryhawk" for those in warmer climates.

    Cessna Skyhawk SP

    Cessna 172 Fact Sheet

    Cessna 172 Budget Buy


  • Powerplant

    Lycoming IO-360-L2A, 180 hp

  • Propellers

    McCauley 2 blade metal, fixed-pitch

  • Length

    27 ft 2 in

  • Height

    8 ft 11 in

  • Wingspan

    36 ft 1 in

  • Wing Area

    174 sq ft

  • Wing loading

    14.7 lb/sq ft

  • Power loading

    14.1 lb/hp

  • Cabin Width

    3 ft 4 in

  • Empty Weight

    1,680 lb

  • Maximum gross weight

    2,558 lb

  • Useful load

    878 lb

  • Payload with full fuel

    560 lb

  • Fuel capacity

    56 gal (53 gal usable)

  • Baggage capacity

    120 lb, 30 cu ft


  • Takeoff distance ground roll

    960 ft

  • Takeoff distance over 50-ft obstacle

    1,630 ft

  • Rate of climb sea level

    730 fpm

  • Service ceiling

    14,000 ft

  • Landing distance over 50-ft obstacle

    1,335 ft

  • Landing distance ground roll

    575 ft

  • Cruise speed/endurance w/45-min rsv, std fuel (fuel consumption, ea engine) @ 75% power, best economy

    124 kt/4.26 hr (9.9 gph)

  • Range

    640 nm

Limiting and Recommended Airspeeds

  • VX

    62 KIAS

  • VY

    74 KIAS

  • VNE

    163 KIAS

  • VS1

    48 KIAS

  • VSO

    40 KIAS

For more information, contact Textron Aviation (Cessna) at or via

All specifications are based on manufacturer's calculations. All performance figures are based on standard day, standard atmosphere, sea level, gross weight conditions unless otherwise noted.