The first Learjet 28 Longhorn (Serial Number 28-001) cruised at 50,000 feet somewhere between Allentown, Pa., and Mattoon, Ill., when the thought hit me. The late Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, had flown this same airplane and here I was riding in the cabin.
Bombardier Learjet 40
Learjet 40, Learjet 45, Challenger 300, Challenger 604, Challenger 605 and Global operators now have the opportunity to increase their control over maintenance costs significantly, with Bombardier Aerospace’s introduction of evolved maintenance intervals for those platforms.
Making a corporate jet work for an individual or a corporation is all about the math. And we all know that the purchase price of an aircraft is simply the price of entry. Bombardier (Booth No. N5731) announced at NBAA 2013 the launch of its Max maintenance program for Challenger 605, designed to reduce direct maintenance costs to owners and operators and increase dispatch availability by extending required maintenance intervals by as much as 50 percent.
Today at NBAA 2013, Bombardier Aerospace launched its MAX maintenance program for the Challenger 605, designed to reduce direct maintenance costs to owners and operators and increase dispatch availability by extending required maintenance intervals by as much as 50 percent.
Flexjet, which will soon be owned by Directional Aviation Capital, doubled its firm order for Learjet 85s today at NBAA 2013. This latest transaction puts the Flexjet order at 115 firm aircraft from Bombardier–including 60 Learjet 85s–and options for 150 more. If all of the options are exercised, this brings the order value total to $5.6 billion
The 50th anniversary of the first flight of the first Learjet, the Model 23, on Oct. 7, 1963, begged to be celebrated and Bombardier obliged with gusto, holding two events at the company’s main assembly facility in Wichita on October 4 and 5 and inviting current and former employees and their families, a few special guests and owners and operators who brought examples of almost every Learjet production model. Only the Learjet 55 was absent, as the aircraft planned for the celebration could not make it at the last minute.
Bombardier Aerospace continues to expand its aftermarket service network in Latin America with the addition earlier this year of Brazil’s Maga Aviation as an authorized service facility for the Learjet 40 line.
Located at Aeroporto de Amarais Campinas in São Paulo state, Maga Aviation is home to more than 20 technicians working in a 2,230-sq-m (24,000-sq-ft) maintenance hangar. The facility works in close collaboration with Bombardier’s regional support office in São Paulo to provide integrated support to business aircraft customers based in or flying through the region.
The first production iteration of the Bombardier Learjet 75 will make its debut next week at EBACE, one year after the company announced the Learjet 70 and 75–upgraded versions of the Learjet 40 and 45, respectively–at EBACE 2012. “This debut of the Learjet 75 marks another exciting year of innovation and we look forward to delivering the first one in the fourth quarter,” said Bombardier Business Aircraft president Steve Ridolfi. The Canadian aircraft manufacturer will also have a Challenger 300, Challenger 605 and Global 6000 on display alongside the new Learjet.
The nation’s third-largest fractional jet program will continue to pursue a “stealth wealth” clientele while offering them customized solutions to their private aircraft travel needs beyond traditional fractional sales, and that may mean bringing more capital into the company, according to Flexjex president Deanna White.
Though the light and midsize jet markets yet await their resurgence from the depths of the past business cycle downturn, at Learjet there is a near palpable sense of anticipation that such a turnaround is looming. The Bombardier division currently has three new models preparing for entry into service next year—the Learjets 70, 75 and 85–and has embarked on a major expansion at its Wichita headquarters.
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