The market for very light jets (VLJs) will be worth $2.52 billion over the next five years, according to a new study by UK-based consultants PMI Media. The report predicts six VLJ designs making it into service: the Adam A700, Cessna Citation Mustang, Diamond D-Jet, Eclipse 500, Embraer Phenom 100 and HondaJet.
Honda HA-420 HondaJet
Honda announced this morning at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., that it will “enter the HondaJet into the growing very light jet market.” According to project leader and vice president of Honda R&D Americas Michimasa Fujino, Honda will establish a new U.S. company to produce the over-the-wing-engine twinjet in the U.S. Honda plans to certify the GE-Honda HF118-powered HondaJet in 2009 or 2010 under FAR Part 23.
Embraer has selected Eaton Corp. to design, develop and manufacture secondary power distribution units and cockpit control panels for the Phenom 100 very light jet. Eaton has already won contracts for the Phenom’s hydraulic power-generation package, flap and landing gear control hydraulic components, throttle quadrant, landing gear control level and flap selector control lever.
Honda Aircraft has selected four U.S. Piper distributors to sell and service the HondaJet, the Japanese manufacturer announced here at NBAA’06.
Honda Motor revealed today that it has established Honda Aircraft, a wholly owned subsidiary, to handle development, sales and production of the HondaJet. The company will start operations in October from Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, N.C., where the HondaJet prototype was assembled and flown. Michimasa Fujino, the chief engineer who has led development of the HondaJet, will be president and CEO.
UK-based fractional ownership program European Business Jets (EBJ) is looking to move into aircraft management to boost its available fleet. The company is also considering adding new types to its fleet, including the Embraer Phenom 100 and HondaJet very light jets. It sells shares in pre-owned jets and currently operates a Cessna CitationJet and a Citation CJ1.
Honda Aircraft revealed a number of intriguing details about the HondaJet program yesterday, including the airplane’s price, performance figures and the fine points of its service-network alliance with Piper Aircraft.
Piper Aircraft president and CEO Jim Bass yesterday unveiled the company’s next generation aircraft–the single-engine, six-seat PiperJet, an airplane priced at just under $2.2 million that adds another serious player to the market for very light jets.
There are 12 very light jets currently in development, in flight-test or recently certified. Nearly all are clean-sheet designs, which typically consume more money and time than do derivatives, illustrating the faith manufacturers (and would-be manufacturers) have in this emerging market.
Start-up manufacturer Spectrum Aeronautical announced last month that it has selected the GE/Honda HF120 turbofan engine to power a new $6.2 million (2006 $) midsize business jet called the S-40 Freedom.
With the announcement, Spectrum became the second customer for the 2,050-pound-thrust engine, currently in development and slated for certification in 2009. The S-40’s certification and first deliveries are “targeted for” 2010.