Bombardier yesterday achieved a breakthrough sale for its new Global 7000 aircraft when Comlux The Aviation Group signed a contract for two of the ultra-long-range jets. It was the first of two deals signed here yesterday by the Canadian manufacturer, which is set to go home from Dubai with at least $285 million in new business.
Comlux selected the new model with the Middle East very much in mind. The Global 7000 will allow the aircraft management and charter operator to fly passengers nonstop from its new regional base in Bahrain to the U.S.
The Canadian airframer introduced its ultra-long range Global 7000 and Global 8000 aircraft two months ago at the NBAA trade show in Atlanta. The newcomers are Bombardier's response to the challenged posed by Gulfstream's new G650 large cabin product.
"It's fitting that we're here in Dubai for the new Globals," said Bob Horner, senior sales vice president with Bombardier Business Aircraft at a press conference announcing the orders. "We were honored to have Comlux endorse the Global 7000 and Global 8000 at the recent launch, and it is fitting that now, here at MEBA, they are ratifying their order for two Global 7000 jets."
"The reason we picked [the Global 7000] is because I think it will absolutely fit with our fleet perfectly," said Comlux president Richard Gaona. As you know, we have aircraft based in Bahrain, and it will give us the possibility to fly nonstop from Bahrain to anyplace from the Middle East right to America without any problem of range or cabin space."
The entry-into-service date for the Global 7000, the larger of the two new aircraft, is set for 2016. Comlux is scheduled to take delivery of its first that year and its second in 2017, the year the longer range Global 8000 is set to enter service. Both aircraft are priced at $65 million in 2010 dollars.
"What we're doing with these two new airplanes is giving increased cabin size, increased range and increased speed at that maximum range," Horner said.
With ranges of 7,300 nm and 7,900 nm respectively, the Global 7000 and 8000 represent an extension of Bombardier's Global line, currently consisting of the Global 5000 and the Global XRS, which will remain in production.
"I really want to emphasize the family concept that Bombardier brings to the market," Horner said. "Bombardier's philosophy is a family of airplanes in each product group. So we have the Learjet family, we have the Challenger family and now we have a full Global family, and we're the only business jet manufacturer that offers that choice of aircraft and that range of aircraft."
Zurich-based Comlux currently operates a dozen Bombardier aircraft, and Gaona likened its Global XRSs to "a Swiss watch. Our flagship has flown more than 1,000 hours on charter without any problem."
The Global 7000 will feature a four-zone cabin with windows 80 percent larger than the Global XRS. "The very real difference is that the 7000 has an additional cabin," Horner said. "It's the only purpose-built business jet that offers this size cabin at this range."