Learjet 60 package offer extended

 - February 5, 2007, 4:45 AM

Bombardier Aerospace director of Learjet products Brad Nolen told AIN that the company has extended indefinitely the Learjet 60 “complete package offer,” which it announced at the NBAA Convention in October. As such, the Canadian manufacturer will continue to include the package–valued at $288,000–at no extra charge to those buying a new Learjet 60.

Nolen described the package as a bundling of services that adds more value to the midsize aircraft. It includes an extended avionics warranty (five years versus the standard two years); more training slots, adding 16 recurrent training slots (eight pilot and eight maintenance) to the standard four initial slots (two pilot and two maintenance); five-year/2,000-hour scheduled maintenance coverage, including parts and labor as well as the 300/600/1,200-hour inspections; one-year membership in Signature’s Net Power fuel-discount program; and discount ground transportation.

This value-added offer is in addition to Bombardier’s announcement at the NBAA show that the Learjet 60 Special Edition, which includes all available options for the jet, is the new production standard effective with S/N 60-275, which was delivered to Unicorp in early October. The SE package consists of an array of avionics and interior options–in all $1 million worth of options above the previous baseline Learjet 60.

Nolen said the Learjet 60SE costs $12.5 million (2004 dollars) versus $12 million for the baseline model, while noting that most customers historically have added at least $500,000 in options “so buyers are now getting a better value with the SE, which is fully equipped.”

From the outside, it’s hard to tell a Learjet 60 from an SE version, simply because most of the extras–all JAR-OPS 1 compliant– can be found inside either the cabin or the cockpit. The exceptions are the auxiliary power unit, with its exhaust stack visible from the exterior, the tail-illumination package and pulsating recognition and landing lights.

Passengers are sure to notice the SE’s wood veneer finishing; premium carpet; microwave; 110-VAC/60-Hertz power outlets; Iridium satphone with wireless handsets; 15.1-inch forward and 10.4-inch aft monitors; CD player with 10-disc changer; DVD cabin video system; and Airshow 400, among other niceties.

On the flight deck, the Learjet 60SE sports a Rockwell Collins TWR-850 weather radar with turbulence detection; VHF com, with 8.33-kHz channel spacing; EGPWS; TCAS II; digital flight data and cockpit-voice recorders; upgraded radio altimeter; ELT; and a second Honeywell KHF-950 long-range com, as well as other features.

Although improvements to the midsize jet’s braking system are not technically part of the SE version, Bombardier has beefed that up as well, doubling the life of the previous system. Nolen said feedback from customers prompted this change, which coincidentally also became a production standard with S/N 60-275. He added that owners of older Learjet 60s can retrofit the more robust brakes to their aircraft via a Service Bulletin.

According to Nolen, sales of the Learjet 60SE with the complete package offer have been brisk since October, which is why Bombardier decided to extend the offer. Interestingly, he said that the international market has been the most responsive to the Learjet 60SE, given Europe’s more stringent avionics requirements.

Proof positive of Bombardier’s marketing efforts is the fact that the Macedonian government in late January took delivery of a Learjet 60SE for use as a head-
of-state aircraft, which includes transport of the Balkan state’s prime minister, Ljubco Georgievski. The 2,500-nm-range Bombardier twinjet won the bid against the Raytheon Hawker 800XP and Cessna Citation Sovereign.

Bombardier said it had manufactured a total of 278 Learjet 60s as of January 31. The entire Learjet 60 fleet has logged more than 775,000 flight hours and posts a 99.52-percent dispatch reliability rate.