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Entries in Diamond Star (1)


Vol. 23, No. 1 | Feb. 17, 2010 | Go to Charts

by Carl Janssens, ASA | Aircraft Bluebook — Price Digest

In the pre-owned aircraft market, bottom feeders are like red herrings.

Bottom feeders — corporate aircraft that have no significant issues with their history, maintenance or condition and are marketed below Bluebook wholesale values — continue to be great opportunities for the fortunate few who buy without a blink of an eye.

They also lead buyers into a false perception of value that only competition in the market can correct.

Reasons why such aggressive marketing maneuvers continue to appear are wide and varied. When a corporate aircraft with no issues with its condition, equipment or history sells for a low price, Aircraft Bluebook–Price Digest investigates to learn the whole story. Capital gains, tax shelters, foreclosures, and even new deliveries are just a few reasons behind these significantly discounted offerings. One common denominator in all of this is the element of time. An aggressive discount in price represents interest in an immediate sale. True, this moves the economy, but such a transaction does not fit the definition of Fair Market, which the Bluebook reports as Average Retail.

Pre-owned aircraft sales activity slowly is showing stability in the market, but news of another bottom feeder eclipses these transactions, and market perception has to be rebooted like after a computer crash.

Serious buyers are starting to see beyond all the drama when an unrealistic offering is being denied by the seller. Ready-to-fly, well-equipped aircraft with fresh maintenance are bringing some normalcy to aircraft values.

Although the market is still nothing to brag about, and trends still might adjust down, this market is nothing like the roller coaster ride of 2009. As the market slowly improves, attention to navigating through the economy is migrating from ground to traffic awareness.


Increased — 2
Decreased — 455
Stable — 419

Late-model, large-cabin aircraft are retaining value. Don’t be surprised if supply and demand create more competition between buyers. This competition will start a slow upward tick in pricing. Now is really the time to buy in this market.

Citation X values remained steady while the Sovereign was off 2 percent from last quarter. Bombardier Global Express and the 5000 remained steady while the Challenger 604 declined 2.5 percent. The Falcon 7X held steady while the Falcon 50 was down 5 percent from last quarter. Late-model Gulfstreams held steady while earlier models were off 5 percent from the winter Bluebook.


Increased — 13
Decreased — 62
Stable — 518

The ag market continued to show no changes in value when compared to the previous quarter. Late-model King Airs remained stable while earlier models generally also held on without trending. The Cessna Caravan was stable with later models down 1 percent or less. Some slight rays of sunshine were select Piper Cheyennes experiencing slight increases from the previous quarter.


Increased — 30
Decreased — 105
Stable — 521

For the most part, late-model twins, the Beech Baron and Piper Seneca held steady for yet another quarter. Early-model twins such as the Cessna 421 and Beech Duke were off 2 percent from the winter Bluebook.


Increased — 272
Decreased — 618
Stable — 1581

Ag planes generally remained unchanged.  Amphibious models such as the Lake were up slightly in trending. The Piper Arrow was also in the positive column while most Maules were off slightly. Late-model Bonanzas and Cessna singles held steady while the Diamond Star was up 5 percent or more. For the most part, values remained steady.


Increased — 13
Decreased — 99
Stable — 904

Helicopter models reported in Bluebook continue to level off. Piston helicopters such as Enstrom and Robinson were up slightly through select model years. Some turbines, such as the Eurocopter EC135, were off 5 percent from the previous quarter. Overall, the majority of models reported in Bluebook remained stable.

Aircraft Bluebook–Price Digest here for you

Please contact Aircraft Bluebook if you have any specific concern in a particular aircraft market. We will be happy to share with you the most up-to-date information available for your market segment. Call us toll-free at 877-531-1450 or direct at 913-967-1913.

[Go to Charts.]