airplane purchase

i’m a first time “poster” so forgive me if i am asking something that is obvious to all you experts.
i’m wanting to buy a cirrus sr22. i see a number of '02 sr22’s that are being advertised as “for sale” due to an upgrade to '03 centennial edition. why? what does this suggest about the 22? is it the vibration issue that i’m told does not exist in the platinum engine mount of the centennial?

There are plenty of SR22 owners who have the resources to get the latest and greatest — so that’s what they do! It’s no stranger than folks who trade in cars that are a year or two old. (Just as for cars, there’s the benefit of getting a new plane before the warranty on the old one runs out.)

Besides the newness factor and the warranty issue, the '03 SR22s have the PFD (which was not available for the '02s).

The good news is that because so many folks are getting new ones, it’s now a great time to buy a used SR22!


If you are moving up from the typical POS spam can we all have been flying, you will find that even the ‘early’ Cirrus aircraft represent a giant leap forward in so many ways it will blow your mind. Once you get a taste of advanced, fully integrated avionics, you will never go back. In fact, when newer, more advanced avionics become available, it is extremely tempting to trade up. Cirrus, Lancair, and Diamond are ushering a new era in general aviation aircraft. This is not just horn blowing for these companies. They have all dramatically advanced the utility of general aviation aircraft by improving speed, comfort, safety, and ease of use while the spam can manufacturers have not invested in any new designs in over 30 years. The whole time they blamed the FAA certification process and the courts for making it too burdensome to improve their products.
Now, the improvements are coming fast and furious, at least compared to the previous 30 years. This will cause the trade cycle to shorten. Many people want the enhanced functionality of the newer avionics and are willing to pay for them. I am not typically a person that trades cars, homes, or airplanes very quickly, but I have to admit, the PFD, TKS anti ice, and upcoming weather info on the Avidyne and Arnav have me drooling. The luxury you have as a first time buyer is to just pick the price point you are comfortable with and buy a plane. You will enjoy it no matter what age you end up with.

What roger said is absolutely correct. Both the SR20 and the SR22 have undergone continual upgrades. The original SR22s had the ARNAV MFD, and the Sandel HSI. soon Skywatch, a $25,000 +/- option was added and while retrofitable, I’m not sure how many have. the ARNAV MFD has been upgraded a few times and finally replaced with the Avidyne. Again, this was retrofitable, but for many it was cheaper to actually buy a new plane.

Over time, TKS and the Avidynd Primary Flight Display were added by Cirrus Design. Neither were retrofitable into the ‘older’ SR22s. Now the latest and greatest is the Centennial edition with the modified engine mount and Platinum Edition TM IO-550N engine.

Cirrus Designs philosophy seems to be to continually stay as close to the cutting edge of aviation technology as practical. Many owners have the desire and can afford to ride that wave, many don’t. Others continually wait, “just another 6 months,” to see if they can get the newest, latest & greatest technology. The really lucky ones do both. They have a plane and are upgrading.

A lot of us have older (?) aircraft, and while we drool over the latest gizmos, are perfectly thrilled to be fortunate enough to have it! (OK, I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t just a wee bit jealous. [;)]) If you have the money and patience, by all means buy new. If time or money is a factor, the used fleet holds tremendous values, thanks to all of those who are selling to upgrade.

In reply to:

What roger said is absolutely correct…

… and everything Marty said is “on the money”, too.
I think of the current G.A. new airplane market as being a lot like personal computer market – you are constantly aware that (a) more capable equipment is on the near horizon, and (b) no matter what you buy, it will not be on the leading edge for very long.
I have heard people complaining about this – I see it as a Very Good Thing. Right now, I’m in that happy time that Marty mentioned – I own an “older” SR20, and will shortly take delivery of a brand new, completely up-to-date SR22 (and sadly, my present trusty steed will go to a new owner).
I’ll savor the few months I expect it will take before Cirrus announces something else, something wonderful, something new, something that I won’t have on my airplane. That’s a VGT for the industry.

  • Mike.