Which Model is Right for You?
Since 1956 a lot has been done to our beloved Cessna 172. With so many models and possible upgrades it’s hard to choose the 172 that’s for you.
Below we’ve listed a few of the more popular models, where Cessna made significant changes to the 172.
172 – As previously stated in the first post, Cessna equipped the 172 with a 145 horsepower Continental 0-300. Over a span of 5 years they manufactured 4195.
172B – In 1961 Cessna redesigned the cowling, spinner, and lengthened the engine mounts. After these minor upgrades they first deemed their airplane the “Skyhawk.”
172D – Up until 1963 the 172 featured what’s know as a “straight tail” with no rear window. The 172D was the first model to equip the fuselage with a rear window, known in 1963 as “Omni-Vision.” The 172D also saw the upgrade to a Continental GO-300E featuring 175 horsepower.
172F – In 1965 Cessna introduced electric flaps to replace it’s lever system.
172H – Cessna discontinued the Continental 0-300 in 1967 and the 172H was the last model to feature this engine.
172I – 1968 started Cessna’s well know Lycoming powered 172. The Lycoming 0-320-E2D was now the way of the future for Cessna.
172K – Made throughout 1969 and 1970 the 172K was know as the start of long range fuel tanks. A popular option to add on during that time.
172L – In 1971 Cessna introduced the 172L which featured tubular landing gear.
172M – 73 through 76 Cessna introduced the “camber lift wing” more commonly know as a droop tip. Cessna also redesigned the instrument panel to allow for more avionics and instruments. Thus the standard “six pack” was born.
172N – The 172N was the first model to have “pre-selectable flaps” and even air condition was an upgradable option.
172P – In 1981 Cessna created the 172P a model meant to fix all the woes of previous models. 40 degrees of flaps were out, 30 degrees was the new thing. The landing light was moved from the nose to the wing to increase bulb life.
172R – Which is still in production today is powered by a 160 horsepower Lycoming IO-360L2A with new sound proofing, interior, and fuel injection the 172R has been a popular choice for pilots and flight schools.
172S – Boasting many of the same features as the 172R but the 172S offers the Garmin G-1000 package.
Choosing the right model can be a daunting and difficult process but after you have ironed out all of you needs you can know what to look for.