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Cessna 172 in flight

Cessna 172

180 HP

150 mph

Cruise Speed

900 fpm

Climb Rate

780 ft.

Take-Off Distance

17,000 ft.

Service Ceiling

2200 hrs


2550 lbs

Gross Weight


Cruise Speed


Climb Rate


Take-Off Roll


Service Ceiling




Gross Weight

Performance Increase

Air Plains 180HP engine upgrade

Complete Kit

We provide an all-encompassing kit during the upgrade. We like to call it a NEW firewall forward upgrade. Our goal is to provide all the hardware needed to complete the installation with ease.

Models B thru P (Standard Items)
  • New Lycoming O-360 Engine

  • New Sensenich propeller

  • All new Baffles with baffle seal attached

  • Engine isolator mounts(four) with mounting bolts 

  • FWD and AFT Spinner Bulkheads

  • Cowl oil door relocation kit

  • Alternator belt

  • New Induction Airbox

  • Carburetor adapter plate

  • Gaskets and mounting hardware

  • Scat hoses

  • Fuel & oil lines

  • Induction air filter element

  • Oil cooler mounts, Flanges/plates

  • Throttle mixture support bracket

  • Installation Hardware and Clamp Kit

  • STC Authorization, Drawings, and Installation Instructions

Models B thru H (Additional Items)
  • Engine Mount

  • New Exhaust

  • Oil Cooler

  • Throttle Cable

  • Vacuum Hoses


It is simple. We believe that 180HP and a fixed pitch propeller provides the best combination of power and reduced complexity for a Cessna 172. The proven and reliable factory new Lycoming O-360-A4M engine comes complete from Air Plains with roller tappets, Slick Magneto, EIS (Electronic Ignition System), wiring harness, spark plugs, carburetor and ring gear. The engine is paired with a light weight Sky-Tec starter and Plane-Power alternator.




180 HP

Max. RPM

2700 RPM

Compress. Ratio


Fuel Consumption

8.5-10.3 GPH

Approved Fuel

91AKI / 100L

Lycoming O-360-A4M Engine
Lycoming electronic ignition system

Electronic Ignition

Our STC upgrade has the option to incorporate the latest technology of the EIS (Electronic Ignition System). Delivered from Lycoming with lighter weight and improved safety that has been field and flight tested. The Lycoming EIS has no moving parts and nearly eliminates scheduled maintenance requirements. 

Aircraft engine

New Firewall

We provide an all-encompassing kit. We like to call it a new firewall forward upgrade. Our goal is to provide all the accessories, components and hardware needed to create a hassle free installation so you can be back in the air quicker.






Engine Model

-A4A,-A4M,-A4N,-A2F, -A3A



Propeller Model





76 - 74.5


Pitch Range







All propellers have been matched to provide the best combination of airframe and powerplant. Propeller blades with different pitch rage are available if your goal is to achieve an optimal cruise speed or climb rate. Our fixed pitch propeller provides a light weight installation and low maintenance solution.


Cessna 172 equipped with Air Plains 180HP
Cessna 172 equipped with Air Plains 180HP

Gross Weight

Expand your envelope. One of the best benefits of our upgrade is the ability to carry additional weight on your flights. It adds flexibility on your range planning and an additional safety margin.  This is why we developed STC SA2196CE. Your Cessna 172 will be a true 4 seat airplane with 1000+ LBS useful load.

Models D thru  L

+200 Lbs

Models M thru P

+250 Lbs

Model R

+100 Lbs

Need a bigger envelope?


With Air Plains there are a few options to get 180 horsepower into your Skyhawk. We do not sell the "STC Paperwork" only because we believe that the kit parts that we offer with the engine upgrade is the "secret sauce" to a complete, safe and successful installation. We have added several more parts over the 40 years with our continual engineering. Our goal is to make the installer's job as easy as possible. Installation instructions and blueprints safeguard the procedures and standards for installation and maintenance of your new engine... no matter where you choose to have it installed. Did you know that in the state of Kansas there is no sales tax on aircraft maintenance or modification?​​​


Option 1

Install at Air Plains

  • Purchase Complete Kit

  • Engine Provided

  • Installed at our Facilities

  • One flat fee

  • Use our Know-How

  • 2 to 3 weeks Turn Time

Option 2

Install at your FBO

  • Purchase Complete Kit

  • Installed by your mechanic

  • Complete Hardware

  • Instructions and Drawings

  • Tech Support provided

Engine installation by Air Plains Services

Forward and Aft Spinner Bulkhead

We provide new forward and aft spinner bulkheads with the upgrade to match the propeller and spacer. No other modification is necessary.

Engine installation by Air Plains Services

New Engine Baffle Set

The new baffle assembly was designed to improve cooling of the engine and to keep cylinder temperatures down. Oil Cooler is located in the rear baffle to improve efficiency.

Engine installation by Air Plains Services

Engine Mount

Installations on models B thru H require a new engine mount provided in our kit. On models I thru P we offer the option to do an inspection of the mount and paint. Weld gussets that help prevent future cracks are also installed.

Engine installation by Air Plains Services

Battery Tray Installation

We have re-designed the battery tray to allow easier removal of the left magneto for inspection and maintenance. 

Engine installation by Air Plains Services

New Induction Airbox

A new induction airbox is provided to accommodate the bigger engine. We have incorporated several improvements to decrease the wear of the components.

We offer several products that will enhance your aircraft and add more pleasure to your flying. During an engine upgrade we are able to install other products and accessories efficiently since we start with a clean slate. 


Lycoming electronic ignition system

Electronic Ignition

JP Instruments engine data monitor

Engine Monitor

custom aircraft interior

Aircraft Interior




Custom aircraft avionics



Flint Aero auxillary fuel tanks



Customer Focus

Besides customer satisfaction, one of our main goals is to provide continual airworthiness for your aircraft. We are never done adding more features to the upgrade kit. This is why we fabricate our FAA-PMA parts in-house. We are able to reduce cost significantly to save you more money and provide a product that meets our kit quality standards. We are here to provide future support in your maintenance. Visit our online store to find STC products and FAA-PMA parts.



OEM Vs. Air Plains

FWD bulkhead
Cessna 172 airbox modified per Air Plains STC





AFT Spinner bulkhead



Adjustable airbox bracket, PMA Part
Aircraft avionics
Fly at 20 In. Hg. and set a comfortable cruise

2570 RPM

138 MPH

Develop more power at altitude and cruise along

8.4 GPH

Rich of peak operation at 9,500 feet

20 In. Hg.

Manifold Pressure

Propeller Speed

2570 RPM

True Airspeed

138 MPH

8.4 GPH

True Airspeed


Upgrade your aircraft with our 180 Horsepower engine and experience a whole new level of performance.  With better cruise speeds and rate of climb, you'll be amazed at the difference. .

Cessna in flight
Fly above the terrain and get there faster
Carry an additional 250 lbs. of payload and pack all your gear
Climb to new heights and find the tailwind

Be Unique

Congratulations! You own the most popular aircraft ever built. We believe that we have created the ultimate upgrade kit that gives your Cessna 172 more versatility and makes it a true 4 seater. Flying in high density altitude days and adding the capability to carry additional payload are just a few benefits that enhances your flying and adds additional safety. Give your legacy airframe the upgrade it needs to set you apart. You will enjoy a new experience.

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