Piper Seneca

Get a peek at Piper's sleek Seneca V and a look back at how the Seneca design has evolved over the years.

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The Piper Seneca has stayed atop the market for more than 40 years thanks to continuous design improvements. (Photo by Jim Raeder) _
_ Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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The Piper Seneca offers what a lot of pilots consider the ideal attributes of a personal airplanes: two engines for redundancy in power and systems, respectable performance, stable handling, ice protection, the latest in avonics technology and lots of room in the comfortable cabin. (Photo by Jim Raeder) Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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Smart door design eases entry into the cabin, which features leather seating, a writing table and a refreshment center. (Photo by Jim Raeder) Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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With room for six, the Piper Seneca has one of the widest and most comfortable cabins of any light twin ever produced. (Photo by Jim Raeder) Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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The most noteworthy change in the latest Seneca is the addition of Garmin G1000 up front. The cockpit seems tailor-made for this feature-heavy panel. Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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The Seneca V is the fifth generation of Piper’s popular light twin, more than 5,000 of which have been built since production began in 1971. While the airframe has changed little over the years, the PA-34 is a substantially different airplane today. Click next to see how the design has evolved from the start. (Photo by Jim Raeder) _
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1971 Seneca I: ****Piper originally began development of the PA-34 Seneca in the late 1960s as a twin-engine variant of the Cherokee Six. Power in the certified airplane came from a pair of counter-rotating 180 hp Lycoming IO-360 engines. A total of 934 Seneca Is were built from 1971 to 1974. (Photo by Roy Feller)
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1974 Seneca II: The Seneca II represented a major improvement over the original. Most noteworthy was the switch to turbocharged 200 hp Continental TSIO-360E engines, which performed better at higher altitudes. Piper also introduced larger ailerons and rudder and stabilator changes for better handling.
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1981 Seneca III: The Seneca III benefited from a power increase to 220 hp for takeoff, giving the airplane significantly better climb performance. Later models of the Seneca III also incorporated additional improvements, such as electric flaps and a 28-volt electrical system.
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1994 Seneca IV: The Seneca IV introduced a number of aerodynamic improvements, including streamlined engine cowls that increased its speed. But in many ways, the new model remained little changed from its predecessor, the Seneca III. (Photo by Joachim Lippl)
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1997 Seneca V: Piper totally revamped the Seneca for 1997, changing to improved Continental TSIO-360-RB engines, adding capability to the cockpit and refining the cabin. This same basic version has remained in production ever since, albeit with a succession of upgrades inside and out. Read the full report "We Fly: Piper Seneca V" here. **
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