Someone please tell me that I'm wrong, but from what I see, it seems like the American manufacturers have completely lost the plot in the light aircraft market. No new technology. No new designs. No innovation at all. It's very sad...
Even the few 'new' aircraft are just derivatives of a design that is 20-30 (or more) years old. Adding a colour moving map GPS to the panel doesn't mean a PA-28 is suddenly 'up to date'. Inside, they still all look like a Trabant with wings (that is a type of East German car from the 60's). I flew a PA-28 at the weekend, and it felt like driving a Trabant too.
As for a recommendation, I would suggest the TB
-21 or others in that family. Aerospatiale/Socata make a very nice range of aircraft. The TB
-21 is 'complex' to meet the requirements for commercial training. See the US site at: www.socata.com
I'm not against American aircraft, and I'm not anti-anything, I just can't see a single reason to buy a Piper or a Cessna. Happy to be corrected!