Limited-edition cabins evoke flavor of world's cities

 - September 14, 2006, 10:04 AM

One of the major selling points of the business jet seems always to have been the ability to customize and personalize the cabin to fit the customer’s desires and tastes. That flexibility has always commanded a price, to be sure, but it was there, and customers took advantage of it.

In recent years Bombardier, for one, has begun marketing its aircraft with a standardized cabin selection, partly as a means of controlling costs and partly to reduce cabin completion cycle time, adding a list of standard options to personalize the cabin. Now, the Montreal-based OEM is offering its Global 5000 Limited Edition Series, an opportunity for the customer to further personalize the standard cabin design.

The goal, according to Bombardier, is “functionality, beauty and exclusivity.” Colors, fabrics, textures and overall design represent distinctive characteristics of each city–cultural identity, famous landmarks, climate, historical relevance and modern architecture. Once a city/cabin is sold, it is no longer available as a limited-edition choice. Three Global 5000s have already been sold–Manhattan, Casablanca and Montreal. Potential buyers are considering Milan, Italy; Antwerp, Belgium; and Tokyo.

Bombardier design engineers are leading the program. The cabin interiors are being built by Bombardier associate C&D Aerospace at its Montreal facility. Bombardier is installing the cabins at its Montreal completion center. The  first twinjet of the series–either Casablanca or Manhattan–was expected to be delivered early this summer and will enter service as a Bombardier demonstration aircraft on loan from the customer.