Cessna Aircraft launched a new version of its midsize Citation Sovereign today at the NBAA Convention, and invited show attendees to visit the new aircraft, which has been under development for the past year-and-a-half, at the static display. President and CEO Scott Ernest revealed that three of the upgraded Sovereigns are currently flying and have thus far accumulated approximately 800 flight-test hours.
When then 23-year-old Armando Leighton, Jr. launched CRS Jet Spares in 1982, Ronald Reagan was president, the Falklands War was raging and the compact disc was new. Today the Falklands conflict is history, Reagan has passed on and the CD is dying, but CRS Jet Spares is going strong. One of the world’s largest aftermarket aircraft parts suppliers, the company is celebrating its 30th anniversary here at the show, where it is giving away a Harley Davidson motorcycle at its booth (No. 3916), just as it does every year at the NBAA convention.
NetJets unveiled its new Bombardier Global 6000 at the NBAA show static display last night. The fractional ownership giant has spent 18 months developing the Signature Series cabin interior for the large-cabin aircraft and will also roll out the new design to other new members of its fleet, including the Challenger 300 and 605. The aircraft is part of the 50-ship firm order for Global business jets placed by NetJets in March last year, along with options for 70 more.
Gulfstream president Larry Flynn noted today at the NBAA Convention that the certified G650 comes with performance improved substantially over earlier projections. Gulfstream had originally predicted a max range of 5,000 nm at Mach 0.90. The revised range is 6,000 nm at the same speed, making city pairs such as Tokyo to New York possible at speeds “faster than any other business jet.” Further, the G650’s takeoff balanced field length was reduced to 5,858 feet from the original 6,000 feet at the airplane’s mtow of 99,600 pounds.
For a market that company president and CEO Scott Ernest describes as remaining soft, Cessna is continuing its product development schedule. During the company’s press conference here yesterday he announced that the Wichita airframer has launched a new version of its midsize Citation Sovereign, and invited show attendees to visit the new aircraft, which has been under development for the past year-and-a-half, at the static display. Three of the upgraded Sovereigns are currently flying and have thus far accumulated approximately 800 flight-test hours.
Crane Aerospace & Electronics has received a number of new product approvals and selections on a variety of business jets. Crane’s FAA-approved SmartStem wireless tire pressure monitoring system now allows Part 135 pilots to check tire pressures on all certified aircraft. “There are presently no other products on the market that allow a Part 135 pilot to check his own tires,” the company noted.
Hawker Beechcraft is moving ahead with restructuring during Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and in a press conference here yesterday HBC chairman Bill Boisture made it clear the new Beechcraft Corp. that emerges in the first quarter of next year will focus on the turboprop and piston aircraft lines.
Charter/management company JFI Jets (Booth No. 2120) has announced its Moscow-based charter partnership, JFI Russia, established last year, is ready for business.
“The deal in Russia has moved into the forward mode,” said Bob Seidel, CEO of the New York City-based charter operator. “We put it on hold for a while. There was political uncertainty for some of the clients and a desire to keep a low silhouette. But now the political landscape is better understood. We’re starting to see the Russians flying again.”
Charter market data services provider Avinode (Booth No. 2120) of Goteborg, Sweden, will present the Avinode 2013 Business Forecast followed by a panel discussion with charter operators at 1 p.m. today in Room N220A here at the NBAA convention.
Third-quarter revenues at General Dynamics’ aerospace division, which includes Gulfstream Aerospace and Jet Aviation, were $1.8 billion, up 30 percent from a year ago due to more green G650 deliveries, while profits rose 20.3 percent, to $261 million.