A few questions for /  Advice needed from Cirrus owners

Sorry to trouble anyone but I would greatly appreciate some experience shared and any advice given.

I am just beginning the process of getting my private pilot’s license as I have put off the idea until I had available time and money. I have a couple of specific questions. If anyone can answer it will be greatly appreciated.

I am looking to purchase a plane with a mission of cutting travel time down significantly for primarily what is now 4 to 10 hour driving trips, and of course allow me to travel much further at my own convenience etc.

  1. I will be able to afford an aircraft in the neighborhood of $250-$400K. What year and model cirrus SR22 is there a major change/upgrade in? Is 2006 significantly more advanced than a 2004? Seems I read 2005 saw some major upgrades??

  2. What are the usual average yearly operating cost? not considering a major overhaul or Chute repack.

  3. Probably a dumb question, But if you deploy the CAPS system does insurance cover this the same as a crash?

  4. Also about the insurance. I understand a new pilot would be extremely difficult to ensure but is it sound thinking to consider higher insurance acceptable and theoretically offset by the saved expense of not renting another plane to gain enough hours to reduce the insurance to more normal costs?

Thanks for any shared thoughts, advice or experiences.

  1. Good 2006 are available in that range. Changes took place all along, but many were accomplished between '05 and '06.

Many others since, too, but the price tag is more painful.

  1. $200/hr

  2. Yes

  3. IR or no? Insurance is expensive til you get one- maybe 1-2% of hull value…maybe more.

Do it!

Join COPA. It will give you access to search hundreds, maybe thousands, of similar threads with thoughtful answers. Best $65.00 you will spend in aviation.

No trouble at all - and welcome to the wonderful world of flying!

  1. Big and worthy changes came with Generation 3 or G3 in 2007. With your budget, you can afford them. Don’t get a G2 if you can afford a G3. There’s a model history on this site that is well worth the 65 USD membership fee alone. More things to consider with your budget: do you want a Turbo? Do you want Avidyne or Perspective avionics?

  2. hmm. Not sure why you would exclude those cost. The usual strategy is to divide those expenses by the number of years they are planned to be apart, then add them to the yearly/hourly cost. Generally, costs are split between fixed, I.e. Those that occur even when you don’t fly, and variable, with fuel being the big one on that side. You can figure out fuel cost from hourly consumption, obviously. An SR22 will use somewhere between 13 and 17 gallons per hour. How much that amounts to in a year obviously depends on how much you fly. Hangarage and insurance are the main non-maintenance fixed costs, and they differ wildly depending on your circumstances. There are several Excel spreadsheets for calculating the cost posted by COPA members, each well worth the 65 USD membership fee alone :wink: yes, there’s something I’m trying to say between the lines :wink: Generally and not meant to sound off-putting, if you cannot pony up 10 or 20000 dollars in a heartbeat if something bad happens maintenance-wise, sole airplane ownership probably isn’t for you.

  3. good question! absolutely emphatically yes.

  4. yes, insurance wil be higher, but you’ll fly the plane you want to fly. And at your convenience. Go for it!

FWIW, for a new pilot that is not instrument rated, weather may be a problem quite often when considering fixed travel planes. If you stay flexible, your plan of flying rather than driving will work, but not always.

Dear Tmain,

yes, a 2006 is a little more advanced than a 2004 SR22. Its the serial number 1663 where the (highly recommended) newer electrical system starts. The “Master Control Unit” was replaced by the much better MCU130 at that point and the new DAU (data aquisition unit) made the display of voltage and power setting on the PFD possible. If the glass cockpit already has SW version 7 oil pressure and oil temperature will be displayed aswell.

For the kind of money you have I would either recommend one of those late G2 models (look for a “GTS” version that has all options except A/C standard) or even an early G3. I think that today you should be able to find a nice G3 GTS for $ 400 K.

Other options that are highly recommended include the (digital) DFC90 Autopilot or an Oxygen system.

All the best

Do yourself a huge favor and spend $65 and become a member. I am getting ready to close on an aircraft early next week and the value I have received thus far from my membership has been … well…invaluable. I would consider making a potential $200-400k investment in a cirrus without spending the time learning from this group of exceptionally knowledgable and helpful COPA members criminally negligent!

Regarding you you specific questions - I am a somewhat new pilot (130 hours) and not yet instrument rated ( though working on it) and my insurance was $2600 year for $1mm smooth for hull value of $200k. So insurance is NOT that bad.

Regarding operating costs - there are a bunch of good spreadsheets floating around the forums - I have a detailed worksheet I am happy to send you as soon as you join the club [:)]

good luck!



Buy a G3
Carbon Spar
O2 in Tail
higher stance on gear
Wet Wing

Insurance is about 1% of hull value and Instrument will take the insurance down another 10% of total cost of insurance.

via COPAme
Samsung SM-N900V


Welcome to COPA! You have asked some good questions and I will let others give you more experienced answers that pertain to your budget. I will add that there is nothing wrong with a G2, though the G3 does have some upgrades. There are quite a lot of choices to consider so be sure to read the posts and ask a lot of questions.

As far as CAPS deployment goes, we have some active members that have deployed CAPS and would be happy to share their experiences with you.

Good luck with your training!

Thomas - your first year of insurance is obviously going to be more difficult then in future years and if you get more certificates and experience in the aircraft you will have many more options. There are options available for low time private(even student) pilots in the Cirrus. It helps to have a broker who works with the Cirrus frequently - I spoke with a pilot just last week who had a broker tell him he couldn’t get insurance in a Cirrus without an instrument rating. Not true at all. Feel free to give me a call/PM to discuss your options - shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes.

Carbon Spar. Sexy, but have any of the non-carbon spars broken?

O2 in tail – not unique to G3. An option on Cirrus of any vintage. Standard on turbos only.

WAAS – many (most?) Cirrus of all vintages have it.

Higher gear stance than G2 – yes! More dihedral and no aileron interconnect too.

Wet wings? Are G1s and G2s dry wings? What does that mean?


I was going to cut and paste the thread where Bob Anderson reviews the G3. But it is very well in depth review that lays out why the G3 was a large improvement over the G2.

I didn’t feel it was

  1. Fair to Bob and

  2. Fair to those that paid the $65 to join COPA.

So for those that wish to see what the benifits are with the G3 just do a search for “G3 Review”.

Correction: Those features are specific to a G3.

Right - All SR2x have wet wings - G3 has higher gear, carbon spar and no aileron/rudder bungee - built in oxygen was optional for all models and is standard in turbo - even some late G2s have WAAS GPS.Many have been upgraded, it’s easy to do (and unnecessary for most pilots anyway) The carbon spar has one main advantage: it is lighter, so the useful load is higher. Also the G3 has 11 Gallons more fuel. The strength of the spar is the same.

Karan –

Off topic for this thread, but —

Can you tell me the name of your insurance agent and/or carrier. My agent insists that no one writes 1M smooth for a pilot with less than 500 hours. I have one pilot in the plane with only 350 but really need 1M smooth.



1-I have flown both G2 and G3 and I recommend G3. A good G3 with Perspective can be found just under $400K. I definitely recommend perspective if you can find one in your price range ( I think it is out there). Obviously, personal preference is a big part of this so I recommend you try to experience some of the differences before buying.

2-I have had good experience with Justin Wulf at Aircraft & Marine Insurance Agency Inc. I think they do a lot of Cirrus bussiness.

3- definitely join COPA and use the resources offered here.

Good luck.

Rick - my insurance is thru the folks at Aviation Insurance in TN. Aviationinsurance.com

My agent’s name is Lynn Priest she can be reached at 615-435-8304. Good luck.

Rick - W Brown will write $1mm smooth even on a 20 year old with less than 400 hours.

Karan and Randy – thanks for the info. I do appreciate it.


Thanks everyone for the wealth of information. I joined up and will try to glean as much information as I can out of this forum.

I had all of my questions answered and really appreciate the help.

Thanks again

My bad. Typo. I meant to type higher gear stance THAN G2. I edited it.