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The Beechcraft Baron is a light, twin-engined piston aircraft developed by Beechcraft. The Baron is a variant of the Travel Air, and was introduced in 1961. Over 6,691 aircraft have been built since the model was introduced, and production is still ongoing. Since its inception, the Baron has always been near the top of the light airplane hierarchy. In 2008 a new Baron costs roughly $1,040,000. As expensive to operate as it is to buy, the ‘next step up’ from a Baron is a very big one. Faster aircraft, with greater range and more load-carrying capability are generally turbine-powered and far more expensive. The older Baron variants, mainly the 55 series, have dropped little in value, with their fair market prices numerically equal to that of their original pricing, in today’s dollars.
Barons come in three basic types: the Baron 55 (short body), Baron 56 (short body) and Baron 58 (long body), with several sub-variants each. The current production version is the G58, featuring a glass cockpit, improved passenger cabin and changes to selected airframe details.