Flying » New Business Aircraft Preview

April 1, 2008
The clean-sheet G650, shown here in an artist’s rendering, Still looks every
Ending protracted speculation about how it would address the aging fuselage cross section of its large-cabin business jets, Gulfstream Aerospace last month unveiled the G650. The model will topple the G550 from its perch as the biggest Gulfstream business jet when it enters service in the first half of 2012. (At least initially, however, the G650 will not replace the G550.)
April 1, 2008
Some sovereign operators fly their airplanes more than 1,000 hours per year.
Since being certified in 2004, this $17 million midsize jet has become one of Cessna's most popular models. One reason is that it can carry eight passengers almost 2,700 miles. Another is that it can take off and land on short runways. and then there's its intentionally simple suite of technologies, which helps minimize maintenance costs and down time.
April 1, 2008
Eclipse has revamped its production line and doubled output, but it still tur
The very light jet industry wasn't exactly flying high last year. A major supplier told me last summer that he expected half of all VLJ makers to fold soon. By the end of 2007, he looked clairvoyant; first the Aviation Technology Group suspended work on the two-seat Javelin and then, early in 2008, after sputtering for almost two years, Adam Aircraft shut its doors.
February 1, 2008
Bombardier’s Learjet 60XR
The Learjet 60XR is Bombardier's latest iteration of a midsize model that has endured since the 1970s, the decade that gave rise to this category of business jet. Learjet's initial midsize entry was the Model 55.
December 1, 2007
The wide-cabin Challenger 605 updates a venerable member of Bombardier’s flee
A venerable member of Bombardier's business jet stable has been made over. The manufacturer has replaced the wide-cabin Challenger 604 with the $27.38 million (typically equipped) Challenger 605.
October 1, 2007
When French airframer EADS Socata unveiled a souped-up version of its venerable TBM 700 single-engine turboprop in 2005, it billed the aircraft as the "anti-very light jet." Indeed, the TBM 850 will carry more payload, fly farther and typically complete a 500-mile trip about as quickly as a twinjet VLJ. It will also burn only about half the fuel and climb like a rocket.
August 1, 2007
The Hawker 4000 features a 100-cubic-foot baggage compartment, a comfortable
More than a decade after the super-midsize Hawker 4000 was announced, Hawker Beechcraft (née Raytheon Aircraft) is preparing to deliver the first copy of the business jet later this year.
August 1, 2007
“We don’t see the VLJ as a substitution for other forms of flying. It’s a rep
A couple of years from now, will you be zipping around between meetings on one of the new very light jets? Assuming you already fly privately, the answer is probably no, according to many of the panelists at the recent Business Models for VLJs and Light Jets, a sold-out two-day conference in West Palm Beach, Fla.
June 1, 2007
Gulfstream introduced the aerodynamically advanced G550 in 2003. Its cabin is
The $47.95 million Gulfstream G550 mates the latest bells and whistles to an airframe-engine combination that can deliver eight passengers and a crew of four to destinations up to 6,750 nautical miles away. That's Tokyo to Palm Beach nonstop in 12.5 hours, with reserves.
April 1, 2007
Cessna’s Mustang VLJ has a claimed top speed of 340 knots.
Cessna was late to the very light jet party. When the company first announced the Citation Mustang, in 2002, it refused to call it a light jet. Cessna CEO Jack Pelton to this day refuses to label the airplane a VLJ and instead describes it as a "downward defense of the product line."

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“Let me be straight with you. What I'd rather have is an airplane. We just had a third kid. I don't like flying commercial. I like to take my family to Hawaii. When I go east, I'd like to have pilots I know.   ”