The original Malibu airframe has been used to create a number of new airplanes. Here’s a rundown of the legacy of that first PA-46.



Robert Goyer

Created in the late 70s and first delivered as a product about five years later when Piper delivered the first Malibu, the PA-46 has proven a remarkably versatile airframe. It has, in fact, been developed (by Piper or others) into at least six different airplanes. Its impact on the continued existence and success of Piper should not be underestimated.

It’s likely that the PA-46 was responsible for at least two companies’ decision to buy the assets of a failed Piper out of bankruptcy and continue the legacy, and the great lineup. Indeed, one Piper employee a few years back, when PA-46 sales accounted for around 80 percent of Piper sales, referred to Piper as a “PA-46 company.”