Thielert Expands Its Diesel Options

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Prowling the grounds at AirVenture, we couldn't help but notice that Frank Thielert, the Germany-based entrepreneur responsible for the engines in Diamond's brisk-selling aerodiesel-powered Star and Twin Star, was in intense discussions with Cessna officials. Is a Thielert diesel about to find its way into a new Cessna? Cessna CEO Jack Pelton said earlier this week that diesel may be an option in the new next-gen high-performance single Cessna shown in a low-key flyby on Monday. But it could just as well be a Lycoming diesel, a mock-up of which we saw in Lycoming's tent. Nonetheless, Thielert has a Cessna diesel program of its own in Europe and announced this week that U.S. approval for an STC to convert the Cessna 172 to the 135-hp Centurion 1.7 has just been granted. And there's more. Thielert has also developed diesel conversions using its 350-hp Centurion 4.0 for the Cessna 414, 421 and 340, although these aren't approved in the U.S. yet. For the Skyhawk, Thielert says it will offer these only to fleet operators and schools initially, until its service network is built out later this year, after which it will sell to all comers. Cost of the Skyhawk conversion -- firewall-forward complete -- is $57,000 to $63,000, variable by Cessna model. Specific models of the Piper PA-28 series have also been approved for U.S. STC conversions, says Thielert. Visit Thielert for the details.