“Only in 2012 will [business jet] deliveries start growing again,” Embraer executive vice president Luis Carlos Affonso said in a pre-LABACE press briefing. He expects 2010 and 2011 will be “difficult years” for the business aviation industry, but noted that there are already signs that the industry is starting to recover. He said the company will meet Phenom delivery goals, if it can build the airplanes fast enough.
Embraer Phenom 100
“Only in 2012 will [business jet] deliveries start growing again,” Embraer executive vice president Luis Carlos Affonso said Tuesday in a pre-LABACE press briefing. He recognized 2010 and 2011 as “difficult years” for the business aviation industry, but noted that there are already signs of an upturn and said the company will meet Phenom delivery goals if it can only make them fast enough.
Embraer on Tuesday announced that it delivered 56 aircraft during the second quarter, including 35 regional airliners and 21 executive jets. Broken down by model, the executive jet side delivered 15 Phenom 100s (including two to an unidentified defense customer, presumably for VIP transport), five Legacy 600s and one Lineage 1000.
JetSuite brokered its first Phenom 100 charter flight in late May for customer Burt Rutan, who flew to his home base in Mojave, Calif. Solana Beach-based Air by Jet, a Part 135 certificate holder, operated the flight. Later this year, JetSuite expects to begin operating its own fleet of Phenom 100s, for which it has a firm order for 50 with an option for an additional 50.
Embraer’s Phenom 300 midsize jet is proceeding toward FAA and Brazilian approval on schedule by year-end. To date, all aerodynamics tests are complete on the larger Phenom derivative, including natural ice-shape flight trials. At the Sun ’n’ Fun Fly-In held in April in Lakeland, Fla., the company said the light jet was undergoing natural ice testing, as well as lightning and high-intensity radiated field (Hirf) testing.
Famed aircraft and spacecraft designer Burt Rutan was the first passenger on a JetSuite-brokered Embraer Phenom 100 Part 135 flight earlier this week to his home base in Mojave, Calif. The flight was operated by Solana Beach-based Air by Jet, a Part 135 certificate holder. JetSuite is acting as a broker for the Air by Jet-operated Phenom 100 flights, according to JetSuite CEO Alex Wilcox.
As a result of the slumping global economy, first-quarter business jet deliveries for 2009 paled in comparison to the same period in 2008, according to numbers released by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association.
Embraer’s Phenom 100 entry-level jet received EASA certification in late April. The Brazilian manufacturer introduced the five-passenger twinjet in 2005 and it received Brazilian Agencia Nacional de Aviacao Civil and FAA certification in December. Meanwhile, last month at EBACE Embraer said it will offer a new Phenom 100 seat with enhanced comfort in form and function, beginning in the fourth quarter.
Embraer announced this week at EBACE that its Legacy 450 and 500 midsize jet programs are proceeding on pace, having completed the joint definition phase that began in July last year. During this phase, Embraer engineers, in collaboration with suppliers, finalized the twinjets’ product definition and established methods for fulfilling certification requirements with the Brazilian civil aviation authority ANAC.
Embraer announced its first-quarter numbers last week, showing that net sales for the manufacturer’s Embraer Executive Jets division were down from $173.6 million in the first quarter of last year to $70.2 million for the same period this year–a drop of 59.6 percent.