You can buy the flagship Lexus LS460–a fine blend of engineering, craftsmanship and performance–for about $80,000. How can a Rolls-Royce Phantom possibly be good enough to justify costing more than four times as much? That’s one question I pondered as a Rolls representative handed me the key to a $353,000 Phantom.
Twenty years after beginning a quest to develop a jet, Michimasa Fujino stood proudly at the Honda display during last year’s NBAA Convention as Honda Motor president and CEO Takeo Fukui honored him with a public display of support for the HondaJet program. The announcements that followed signaled the beginning of sales for the $3.65 million jet, and by the end of the show Honda Aircraft had logged orders for more than 100 aircraft.
Honda Aircraft took its first deposits for 100-plus HondaJets during the NBAA Convention last week and is negotiating with “a number of fleet customers,” according to president and CEO Michimasa Fujino. The new twinjet will sell for $3.65 million (2006 dollars), with first delivery scheduled in 2010.
Honda Aircraft has selected four U.S. Piper distributors to sell and service the HondaJet, the Japanese manufacturer announced here at NBAA’06.
It might have the look and feel of an oversized luxury automobile in the cabin, but it is all airplane. “We were asked to make the passenger feel as if he or she were in a large, luxury SUV, such as the Porsche Cayenne or the BMW X5,” said Franck Burnet, CEO of Burnet Interiors, which was contracted by Grob Aerospace of Germany to build the cabin mockup of the aircraft manufacturer’s new SPn utility jet.
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