Textron Aviation Announces 10-Ship Order from Kansas State Salina


Kansas State University Salina will double its current fleet of Cessna 172 Skyhawks with an order for 10 new training aircraft announced on October 5 by Cessna parent Textron Aviation. The university’s Aerospace and Technology Campus, which operates more than 30 aircraft already as well as a complement of flight training devices, will start taking deliveries of the new Skyhawks in the first quarter of next year. K-State also trains students in the Beech Baron 58 piston twin and offers upset training in the fully aerobatic American Champion Super Decathlon.

“Kansas State University has been training future pilots in Cessna Skyhawks since their program’s inception in 1987,” said Textron Aviation Vice President of Piston Sales Chris Crow. “Textron Aviation remains committed to supporting the training and development of the next generation of pilots, and our continued strong relationship with Kansas State is a critical element to these efforts.”

K-State most recently modernized its fleet in 2019 with five new Skyhawks. This week’s order will include Garmin G1000 NXi avionics. The university program was also among the first to participate in Textron Aviation’s Top Hawk program, which enables select academic institutions to fly custom-branded Skyhawks to help promote their programs.

Alysia Starkey, CEO and Dean of K-State Salina, said, “The addition of these aircraft is a major step toward our vision to meet industry demands by providing students experience from a primary trainer all the way to a business-class airplane.”

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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  1. About $500,00 per unit. Big but necessary investment. I hope all goes well for them. Tough time for GA. We have been priced into oblivion for all intents and purposes.

  2. I don’t understand the need for a panel covered with TV screens in a primary trainer. You want a new bee to be looking outside, not searching a panel ( with too much information) as they are learning basic attitude flying, since it can take several seconds to pry your brain away from a data filled screen. ( see texting and crashing cars) Transition to a panel full of IPads is easy but going to steam gauges after training on glass will be difficult( cross check? We don’t need no stinking cross check)

  3. You just can’t beat a C172! But, half a million..wow. And, these kids will never see steam gauges. Glass is all they will ever know. It’s the future and the way it is taught now. Flight is automation and the associated supporting equipment…glass. But then I’m not missing a basic ADF indicator anymore either. Evolution.

  4. With the Super D they still have one airplane that will not require an airborne electronics systems engineering degree. Love the G1000 though.