Cessna Delivers Four; Sees Demand for More

 - November 17, 2009, 8:59 AM

As evidence of the continuing demand for new aircraft in the Middle East, Cessna handed over four Citations to four separate customers at the Dubai Air Show. Jordan’s Arab Wings received a Sovereign, while the Egyptian Aviation Academy took delivery of the first of four Mustangs on order. The Algerian government accepted its new XLS+ and Saudi Arabia-based Citation distributor Wallan Aviation took delivery of the first Middle East Citation X to be fitted with elliptical winglets, which boost range by 480 nm with six passengers. Trevor Esling, Cessna’s international sales vice president, told AIN that while sales are relatively slow, there is fresh demand from the region across the entire Citation line and growth is expected over the next five to 10 years. According to Esling, Middle East customers voiced strong demand for the company’s now-shelved long-range Citation Columbus. “The main requirement is to be able to fly Dubai to London nonstop,” he said, noting Cessna will eventually have to fill that niche if it wants to avoid losing customers to rivals offering larger aircraft.