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Cessna 402

The Cessna 401 and 402 are series of 6 to 10 place, light twin, piston engine aircraft. This line was manufactured by Cessna from 1966 to 1985 under the name Utiliner and Businessliner.[1][2] All seats are easily removable so that the aircraft can be used in an all-cargo configuration.[1]

Neither the Cessna 401 and 402 were pressurized, nor are they particularly fast for the installed horsepower. Instead, Cessna intended them to be inexpensive to purchase and operate.[2]



The Cessna 401 and 402 were developments of the Cessna 411.[1] All 401s and 402s are powered by turbocharged Continental engines with three-bladed, constant speed, fully feathering propellers. On later models cruise power was limited to 75% to reduce cabin noise. Some aircraft have a propeller synchrophaser to reduce cabin noise and vibration.[1]

The Cessna 401s, 402s, 402As and some 402Bs built from 1966 to 1971 had four small oval windows, which gave the aircraft a similar appearance to the pressurized Cessna 340. Starting half-way through the production of the Cessna 402B the window configuration was changed to the more distinctive five rectangular windows, an arrangement that was retained through the 402C model, until the completion of production in 1987. All 402Bs were equipped with tip-tanks.[2]


In 1969, American Jet Industries began work on a turboprop-powered conversion of the Cessna 402, named the Turbo Star 402, using Allison 250-B17 engines.[3] The prototype flew on 10 June 1970.[3] Further modifications providing increased fuel tankage, higher gross weight, and lower minimum control speed were carried out in 1974 and the modification was recertificated.[3] Scenic Airlines of Las Vegas purchased the rights to the design in 1977.[4]

The Cessna 402C may be outfitted with vortex generators to increase maximum allowable takeoff weight to , with a zero-fuel weight of .[5]

Another modification for the 402C increases the maximum landing weight to , which allows commercial operators to fly with an increased payload on shorter routes.[6]


The 1967 model Cessna 402 showing the four oval windows characteristic of early 402s
The 1967 model Cessna 402 showing the four oval windows characteristic of early 402s

This family of aircraft was built in several versions:

Six to eight seat interior, intended for corporate transport. Produced 1966-1972. 404 were built. The replacement for the 401 in the corporate transport role was the 402 Businessliner variant. Certified 20 September 1966.[1][7][8]
A 401 with minor changes, 132 built. Certified 29 October 1968.[8][9]
A 401A with minor changes, 91 built later replaced by the 402B. Certified 12 November 1969.[8][9]
A 401 with either a utility (for freight) or nine-seat commuter use, number built included in 401 totals. Certified 20 September 1966.[8][9]
A 402 with a baggage compartment in lengthened nose and an optional crew entry door, 129 built. Certified 3 January 1969.[8][9]
402B Utiliner/Businessliner
402A with minor changes, from 1972 had increased cabin volume and five windows each side, 129 built. Certified 12 November 1969.[8][9]
  • Utiliner version has a ten-seat interior intended for commuter airline operations.[1]
  • Businessliner version has a six to eight-seat interior with executive seating intended for corporate transport[1]
402C Utiliner/Businessliner
402B with increased takeoff weight, longer span wings without tip tanks and new landing gear, 681 built. Certified 25 September 1978.[8][9]

1535 Cessna 402s were built.[7]


Two Cape Air Cessna 402C's in San Juan, Puerto Rico


The Cessna 402 has proven to be a very dependable aircraft over the years which, along with its range and passenger capacity has made it a popular choice for many small regional airlines worldwide. The planes are generally utilized on short, thin routes to hubs where passengers can connect to higher density routes.

The largest operator of the type is Cape Air, which currently has a fleet of "over 64 402s" operating in the Caribbean and United States.[10]



  • Barbados Defence Force
  • Bolivian Naval Force
  • Djibouti Air Force
  • Finnish Air Force two aircraft, former operator
  • Armed Forces of Haiti


American R&B singer Aaliyah died along with the pilot and seven others, including makeup artists and record label executives, when Cessna 402B N8097W crashed on August 25, 2001 at Marsh Harbour, Abaco Islands, The Bahamas.[11] The pilot, Luis Morales III, was unlicensed at the time of the accident and had traces of cocaine and alcohol in his system. Aaliyah's family later filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Blackhawk International Airways, which was settled out of court. The Cessna 402B exploded on impact just 200 feet beyond the end of a runway at Marsh Harbour International Airport on Abaco Island at 6:45 p.m., Rahming said. The craft, which was bound for Opa-Locka Airport, just northwest of Miami, was apparently overloaded and suffered engine failure upon liftoff, he said.[12] Blackhawk was listed in Customs documents as the official operator while Skystream is listed as the plane's owner.[13] Others killed in the accident included Aaliyah makeup artist Eric Foreman, 29, and Virgin Records representative Douglas Kratz, 28, according to Rahming. Two other women and three other men, including the pilot, died in the crash; another male passenger died early Sunday morning in Nassau, where he was awaiting airlift to a Miami hospital.[14]

Specifications (402C)

See also




External links

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