In the works: Aerion, Supersonic business jet

 - November 24, 2009, 6:46 AM

At last month’s Dubai Air Show, Aerion reiterated its ongoing efforts to find a manufacturing and development partner for its nascent supersonic business jet and confirmed that it still holds letters of intent backed by $250,000 refundable deposits for approximately 50 aircraft.

“We are encouraged by our discussions with potential partners,” said Aerion vice chairman Brian Barents. “The state of the economy has slowed their decision-making progress, but it has not lessened interest in this program. We are also encouraged by continuing strong customer interest in the airplane, particularly in the Middle East.” Holders of nearly a quarter of the letters of intent are located in the Middle East, India and Pakistan, according to Aerion, with the rest in Europe and the Americas.

The next step for Aerion and a partner will be a nine- to 12-month technical assessment phase, and this would lead to a five-year development and certification program. Price of the Aerion jet is $80 million.