EBACE Convention News

Sun Sets On Successful EBACE 2014

 - May 21, 2014, 5:05 AM

EBACE draws to a close this evening at the end of a successful show that has already seen new products launched, partnerships announced and aircraft ordered, with a full day of business still to go. Joint hosts EBAA and NBAA were pleased to see the show grow since the 2013 edition with nearly 500 exhibitors participating, an increase of 8 percent. Booth spaces sold for the show totaled 2,276 sq m (24,500 sq ft), up 4 percent from 2013. The contiguous nature of the revised hall layout has drawn approval from exhibitors and show visitors alike.

Outside in the static park 55 aircraft are on display (the 56th was still in maintenance), and the footprint of the static ramp has also been maintained. Exhibitors have once more realized the value that the show can bring in displaying their products directly to potential owners and operators.

OEMs Steal The Show

New aircraft often dominate the headlines when it comes to business aviation shows but, with few orders announced, this was even truer this week as manufacturers chose EBACE to launch their new projects. The exception was Pilatus, which took the EBACE show by storm. On Tuesday the Swiss company opened the orderbook for its PC-24 business jet, having unveiled the project here in Geneva a year ago, and by the end of the first day’s trading the Swiss manufacturer had notched a staggering 75 sales as the company prepares for the official roll-out ceremony at Stans on August 1. Nine more sales were announced yesterday to raise the total to 84, and production slots are all taken through 2019.

Dassault Aviation led the fanfare on the show’s media day by unveiling its top-of-the-range Falcon 8X, a lengthened and longer-ranged derivative of its Falcon 7X, as well as showing off a cabin of the eagerly awaited super-midsize Falcon 5X.

On the cabin front, however, the ultra-long-range Global 7000 fuselage mockup that Bombardier unveiled on its stand out-gunned the 8X in terms of sheer length. The company claims it to be the largest business jet mockup ever made, with a length of 111 feet. Bombardier says the Global 7000 will enter service in 2016.

At the same time Gulfstream tried to edge ahead of its Canadian rivals again in the ultra-long-range marketplace, lifting the lid on the G650ER, an extended-range version of the company’s flagship G650 that will be available from early next year. With a range capability of 7,500 nm the G650ER becomes the longest-legged business aircraft in the world.

Another new type revealed this week was the Piaggio Aero Avanti EVO, a major reworking of the distinctive Avanti design with significant performance, comfort and safety advances. Piaggio has already sold three of the new model.

In the static park the major debutant is Embraer’s Lineage 1000E, making its first appearance at EBACE. Also in the Brazilian OEM’s lineup was one of the Legacy 500 experimental aircraft, taking a break from its testing duties to show off the type’s cabin interior for the first time ahead of certification due for mid-year. Nextant’s 400XTi has also been attracting interest, while the company has been briefing interested parties on its forthcoming G90XT.

Textron is something of a new name in the business aviation world, but it now has the Beechcraft, Cessna and Hawker businesses under one wing. The company used its EBACE display to underline the wide range of products it now has in its stable. Another Textron company is Bell, which is showing off its new 505 JetRanger X at EBACE for the first time in mockup form. The light helicopter is due to make its first flight later this year.