Legacy upgrades boost range and performance

 - November 2, 2007, 7:34 AM

Embraer introduced a beefed-up Legacy Executive jet at the NBAA Convention last month. In a series of just-completed improvements started early this year, the Brazilian airframer has boosted range with added fuel capacity, higher engine thrust and enhanced aerodynamics. Carrying eight passengers, the corporate Legacy can now fly up to 3,250 nm nonstop at Mach 0.74–an almost 5-percent increase over the original 3,100-nm range.

Available thrust from each of the aircraft’s Rolls-Royce AE3007 turbofans has been increased by 7 percent to 7,953 pounds. This extra power is available on command
to boost short-field capability. The fuel-tank system has been modified to allow for an increased uplift of 18,170 pounds.

Aerodynamic improvements include the removal of windshield wipers, redesign of fairings and air inlets, polished leading edges and smoothed surfaces, as well as installation of flat hubcaps to reduce drag and improve fuel economy. The upgrades have required amendments to the Legacy Executive’s type certificate and this process is now complete.

On display at the NBAA show were both the Legacy Executive and a 16-seat-configured version of its Shuttle sibling, which can carry up to 37 passengers. This was the first time Embraer had shown both Legacy offerings at the event, and the winglet-equipped Executive on the static ramp featured a new-look interior design. The improved cabin includes a more spacious lavatory (and the option of having a forward lavatory), a larger galley and improved acoustic insulation to dampen noise.

Both models offer six-foot, stand-up cabin height and total usable space of 1,410 cubic feet. The feeling of spaciousness is enhanced by ambient light from 22 windows and LED lighting. Cabin equipment for the reworked regional jet includes leather seats, divans, credenzas, group and individual tables, galley, lavatory, wardrobe, DVD players, 6.5-inch LCD monitors and satellite communication systems.

The Executive version offers 240 cubic feet of baggage space, while the Shuttle boasts a more spacious 325 cubic feet. Both units can be accessed while the Legacy is in flight.

The Legacy’s Hamilton Sundstrand APU allows it to generate all ground power needs at airports that cannot provide support infrastructure. The cockpit features Honeywell’s Primus 1000 integrated avionics suite.

With a typical completion, the Legacy Executive sells for $20.8 million. Embraer offers three versions of the Legacy Shuttle, derived directly from the Embraer 135 regional jet: the 37-seat high-capacity example priced at $15.4 million; the 16- to 19-seat in standard configuration at $16.4 million; and another of the same capacity but with a higher-quality interior selling for $17.5 million.