As used aircraft values got pummeled over the last few quarters, it seemed that the buyers had all but disappeared. They hadn’t. Now that the inventory of most model types is at unprecedented highs and prices are at unprecedented lows, buyers are reemerging in more noticeable numbers and scoring big time on CJs to G550s, often executing a trade some 30- to 50-percent below the prices accepted at this time last year.
Aviation International News » August 2009
Qatar Airways is getting into the private charter business with the launch of its Qatar Executive subsidiary. The new operation, which will be based at Doha International Airport, took delivery of two new Bombardier Challenger 605s in June. The fleet also includes a Challenger 300.
Earlier this year Rep. Jim Oberstar (D-Minn.), chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, reassured members of the House of Representatives that Europeans were “blowing smoke” and “crying wolf” when they threatened reciprocation if the Democrat-sponsored H.R. 915 FAA Reauthorization Act became law. It passed 277 to 136 primarily along party lines.
The biggest names in the avionics business have spent the last year preparing for the introduction of major upgrades to their existing integrated cockpits or developing entirely new avionics systems, all designed around the noble goals of improving flight efficiency and safety while serving as stepping stones to the so-called NextGen operating environment.
European fractional ownership provider Jet Republic is now trying to sell whole midsize business aircraft. Under its new Free to Fly program announced at the end of June, the company is offering Bombardier Learjet 60XRs for $13.5 million, at what it claims is a discount of more than $1 million off the full list price of $14.6 million.
Garmin’s GPSmap 696 is a capable and feature-filled portable GPS navigator that doubles as a Class 1 or 2 electronic flight bag (EFB) with the ability to display weather, terrain, approach charts and airways. While the 696 displays own-ship position on moving maps and SafeTaxi airport diagrams, potential buyers should know that it does not do so on approach charts.
Honeywell has been selected by Embraer to provide the air conditioning and temperature control system for the new Legacy 450 and Legacy 500. The system will use bleed air from the engines to cool the cabin. Honeywell claims improved reliability of its HTF7000 system is key to a more sustainable cabin environment.
The first Project Phoenix CRJ is about to enter service, having made its first flight on June 12 from the Flying Colours facility in Canada, where the former Bombardier Canadair Regional Jet was converted into a 15-passenger business jet. The customer for the CRJ is Hong Kong-based aircraft sales group Ritz Pacific.
Egyptian charter operator Smart Aviation is preparing to take delivery of the first two Cessna Citation Sovereigns to be certified for medical evacuation work using the LifePort dual-patient cabin interior package. In June, LifePort certified its Patient Loading Utility System for use with a single patient on the Sovereign.
St. Gallen-Altenrhein Airport plans to boost its standing as an alternative business aviation gateway to Zurich and eastern Switzerland by building a new executive terminal. The privately owned airport, which has rebranded itself as Business Airport St. Gallen-Altenrhein, has said the new facility will be open by July 2011.