Used Aircraft Guide

December 2011 Issue

Used Aircraft Guide: Cessna 421

The aptly named Golden Eagle is fast, stylish and hauls a lot. Cheap to fly isn’t on the list.

Like the Lockheed Constellation, Cessna’s 421 Golden Eagle is an airplane of another age. Impossibly sleek, fast and comfortable, it’s hard to imagine such a thing ever being built at all, never mind again. But owners rave about the 421’s exceptional combined capabilities and even though many of them could easily afford turbines or light jets, they stick with their Golden Eagles for delivering the best value for the money spent. But that’s not to say owning a 421 is cheap. Far from it. The engines alone can amount to $50,000 or more each and with known ice, pressurization and even a lav of sorts, there’s a lot to maintain. Said one owner: “Don’t even ask what it costs to run it. That just shows you can’t afford it.”

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