Cessa 172N For X-Plane

The Cessna 172 is a very familiar sight at many airports.  There is at least one or two in every flight school’s fleet and just about every pilot flew one as a student.   Flying the 172 is like a blast from the past and reminds me frequently of those tough lessens learned.

With Carenado’s entry into the X-Plane marketplace, it was only a matter of time that their FSX model made its way to the other side.  And, it just did.  Welcome the latest release from Carenado, the Cessna 172N model.

Carenado's Latest X-Plane model: Cessna 172N

Available with wheels, floats and skis, the model can be wrapped in one of four liveries depending on you preference of era (modern vs classic vs somewhere in between).   In addition, the package includes a lively sound set and some awesome animations including a pilot and suspension.

Suspension and Brake Detail

I had the chance to take the 172N faring model out for a quick touch and go at Oceano Airport (L52).  One of the first things I noticed was the throaty, deep rumble of the engine, which immediately brought back some interesting memories of doing run-ups as a student.

The second thing I noticed was the shine / reflection on the “glass” of the cockpit and exterior of the fuselage. Details like this bring a sense of realism to the simulator.  Walking around the outside, other details emerge, like the suspension detail of the front wheel and the brake pads on the main gear.

< Check out the X-Plane Directory for other great add-ons >


Moving inside, the usual detailed cockpit is all there.  Having spent time in a real 172, I immediately felt right at home and familiar.  Panning around with my joystick, I can see the cockpit from all angles and sure enough, it looks like a Cessna 172 interior.

The Camera Pop-up

One feature that really, really stood out to me was the quick reference “cameras” pop-up.  If you click the indentation where the N-number place would normally be, up pops a little click-able placard that gives you different views.  Included are options to enable skis and farings on the exterior as well switch interior views including Co-Pilot view, Nav and Switches, Fuel, and my favorite, “View From Rear.”

The "View From Rear" will surely entertain.

The “View From Rear” makes me appreciate how my grandmother felt during while recording (with an 8mm camera) my grandfather performing aerobatic maneuvers in a Piper while he was a test pilot.   I spent a few minutes flying from this view and quickly became air sick.

<check out my review of the Carenado Piper Saratoga SP for X-Plane>

Upon taking off, those throaty sounds gave me a very real feeling.  As I pushed the throttles forward, the deep bass in the sound (enhanced by my sub-woofer) started vibrating my desk and I could feel it in my joystick.  It really did feel real there for a bit.  Sweet! Talk about bringing back memories as a student pilot!

The model with floats.

So, what is there to not like about Carenado’s Cessna 172N for X-Plane? Not much.  It seems to be a little heavy on the frame rates compared to the Mooney they offer, but it is not as bad as the Saratoga (which kills my video card every time).   The included liveries don’t excite me much, but I am sure painters will take care of that issue shortly!

Lifting off on another X-Plane flight.

Would I recommend paying the $25.95 for this model?  Hell YES!  The package that you get is very complete and rivals payware costing twice as much.   With three models (including skis), a great set of sounds, multiple views and the awesome X-Plane community to support you, how could you go wrong with this purchase?

So, quit reading and go get! Start reliving those tense moments as a student pilot!


<link to Cessna 172N by Carenado>


9 thoughts on “Cessa 172N For X-Plane

  1. Thank you for this review.
    I bought the plane – and still there is the issue with the light switches – as with some other of Carenados Models for X-Plane. On the 172N it is impossible to switch get the nav and strobe lights going.
    Anyone having the same issue?

  2. Pingback: Another X-Plane Release: Carenado’s F33A | A Reality of My Own

    • The sounds are highly accurate and rich in depth. I was amazed at how similar they are to the real thing. You can truly fly by the sound of the engine. Cheers!

  3. Excellent. I thought they did that with all their planes, but on their product page they left out the bit on their sounds. Usually HD sounds, good to hear. I know what I’m getting in a couple days 😉

    • I think you will like them. What kind of speakers do you have? I have a 3-piece Logitech system that really carries the exhaust well.

      • I have the Creative Tactic 3D Sigma headphones. I used to use the Saitek P90’s, but the sound quality isn’t as good as the Sigma. I wonder if A2A will ever consider converting some of their aircraft to XPlane? That would be fantastic if the did.

  4. Estoy intentando comprar el paquete de Carenado – C 172N Skyhawk para x-plane, pero no puedo.
    Indiquenme por favor que tengo que hacer para comprarlo, gracias

    Estoy intentando comprar el paquete de Carenado – C 172N Skyhawk para x-plane, pero no puedo. Indiquenme por favor que tengo que hacer para
    I’m trying to buy the package of fairing – 172N Skyhawk for x-plane C, but I can’t. SOEs please I need to do to

  5. This 172 is perhaps the most realistic of any X-Plane sim. The sound is fantastic and it is identical to the Skyhawk I flew in 1969. Exactly. A lot has changed since then. Would it have been a sin to add a GPS? .

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