First flight of Diamond Aircraft’s D-Jet has apparently slipped from this past October to sometime next year, according to the company’s Web site. A Diamond spokesman did not return repeated telephone calls seeking a reason for the delay in the very light jet’s progress. One press report from the AOPA Convention last month quoted a company representative saying that the D-Jet would fly in March.
Earlier this year, Diamond Aircraft North American division president Peter Mauer told AIN D-Jet subassemblies were built at the company’s headquarters in Tussenhausen, Germany, and then shipped to Diamond’s facilities in London, Ontario, for final assembly and subsequent first flight. According to the company, all flight- test articles will also be assembled and flight tested in London.
Mauer said that D-Jets will most likely be assembled in North America, with several places within Canada and the U.S. on the short list. He added that full-rate production of the Williams FJ33-powered jet single could be as high as 200 aircraft per year.
The manufacturer chose the Garmin G1000 avionics system for the D-Jet this summer. Diamond claims it has firm orders for 123 copies of the “well under $1 million” VLJ, which is still expected to receive FAA certification in the second half of 2007.