This summer, Cirrus Aircraft announced that CEO Dale Klapmeier would be retiring from the leadership of the company he co-founded and that he has helped guide for 20 years. Cirrus is the world leader in the light personal transportation aircraft market, and for good reason. The SR22 is a beautiful, comfortable and utilitarian ride that incorporates the best in new technology seamlessly. The SF50 Vision Jet is the world’s only civilian single-engine jet in production, and it’s arguably an even better plane than the SR22, which is saying a lot.
In years to come, we’ll look at Cirrus’ history of leadership in this arena and finally get it. Despite considerable friction from old-school elements in aviation, the company was able to create a new sales paradigm by selling very high-end aircraft to people who had the means to buy them despite not necessarily having the experience to fly high-performance singles.