Piper Dakota: Range, Speed, Load Capacity (1979)

The Piper Dakota for 1979

Piper has built an airplane that's capable of making even the most loyal Cessna buyer change his mind.

The Piper Dakota. It doesn't merely measure up to the standards set by the Skylane. It surpasses them.

Most planes in this class are bought for load carrying. And compared to the 1135-pound useful load of an equipped Skylane, a comparably equipped Dakota carries 1236 pounds.

Consider the practical meaning of this extra load capability: In a Dakota, you can carry a full load—880 pounds of four passengers and luggage—as far as 542 nautical miles with a 45-minute reserve. 52% more range than the 356 nm you get with the same load and reserve in a Skylane.

To get the same 542-nm range in a Skylane, you have to start off-loading passengers and luggage, defeating the whole purpose of buying this kind of airplane in the first place.

And the Dakota achieves its range capability without any sacrifice in speed. At a fuel consenting 65% power and 9000 feet, for example, the Dakota cruises at 139 knots, compared to 137 for the Skylane.

Skylane Description Dakota
$37,350 Base price $36,750
1135 Useful load (equipped) 1236
16,500 Service ceiling 17,000
137 kts. Cruise speed (65% power) 139 kts.
356 nm Range (Note 1) 542 nm

Note 1: 65% power, 45-minute reserve, 4 passengers and luggage— 880 lbs

There’s a reason the Dakota excels so consistently Its an airplane that’s modern and highly efficient.

The Dakota engine, for example, is a rugged 235- horsepower Lycoming with a new ram air induction system, mounted in a close-fitting, streamlined cowl for efficiency and the wings on the Dakota are semi-tapered for superb performance and handling qualities.

The cabin of the Dakota has been just as carefully thought out. Since the passengers who sit in it will be sitting there 186 nm longer than they would in a Skylane, the Dakota has comfort-designed, adjustable seats.

For warm weather, optional PiperAire air conditioning—with individually adjustable multiple vents—is available.

All in all, the interior-is more comfortably luxurious than any airplane you can buy for the money.

If you've been looking at Skylanes, compare what you've learned from Cessna to what your authorized Piper Dealer can tell you about the Dakota. He's listed in the Yellow Pages. And see him soon.

More airplane for the dollar.

Piper Aircraft Corporation, Lock Haven, PA 17745

Member of GAMA

GG Archives REF: BPPAC-035-1979-C-AD

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