The new Citation Sovereign+ received EASA certification, Cessna announced today. The upgraded jet has enhanced climb performance and range, as well as Garmin G5000 avionics. Cessna recently completed a demonstration tour of the Sovereign+ in Europe, where it made its debut last month at EBACE 2014 in Switzerland. “We have a number of European customers ready to take delivery of their aircraft, and with EASA certification we can now get the Sovereign+ into the marketplace,” said Textron Aviation vice president for jets Chris Hearne.
Wheels Up displayed its first Cessna-refurbished Citation XLS during a preview event yesterday at Westchester County Airport in White Plains, N.Y. The company announced in December that it would add refurbished Citation Sovereigns and Excel/XLSs to its closed membership fleet of King Air 350is. The recently delivered XLS is one of 10 it will take this year. By year-end, Wheels Up expects to have 27 King Air 350is, 10 Citation Excel/XLSs and five VistaJet Global 5000s.
Business jet makers continued to build on their delivery momentum from last year, while total industry billings increased by 9 percent year-over-year, according to first-quarter delivery statistics released last month by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA).
The Aviation Alliance’s plan to remanufacture Cessna 421s and Gulfstream GIIIs is moving forward, according to managing director Geoff Miller, despite financial setbacks that have caused delays. Some people, such as former Cessna CEO Jack Pelton, and partners are no longer associated with the Alliance, and a new source of funding had to be found. “That’s why there was a hesitation in the cash flow,” Miller told AIN.
Cessna Aircraft received an FAA Type Inspection Authorization (TIA) certificate for the Citation Latitude, the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer announced this week at EBACE. The TIA allows Cessna to begin accumulating flight hours that will apply toward certification.
Gama Charters has hired 100 pilots to support ongoing deliveries of Beechcraft King Air 350i aircraft ordered by private aviation membership club Wheels Up, and plans to recruit 100 more as the twin-engine turboprops roll off the assembly line in Wichita. Gama Charters, the U.S. subsidiary of Gama Aviation (Booth 5551), of Farnborough, UK, dry leases and serves as exclusive operator of the Wheels Up-registered 350i aircraft for member flights in the U.S. Northeast, Southeast and Southwest.
Textron Aviation (Booth 6113), here for the first time since it integrated Cessna, Beechcraft and Hawker, has a number of programs in development or just certified. The transition to a unified company is taking place in customer support, too, with maintenance technicians undergoing cross-training on all of each brand’s models. However, while Hawker jets continue to be supported, the company has no plan to produce any more aircraft under the brand, Textron Aviation president and CEO Scott Ernest said during a press conference on Tuesday.
Scott Ernest, who joined Textron and took over as CEO of the company’s Cessna subsidiary in May 2011, recently presided over one of the largest manufacturer mergers in aviation history this year, the integration of Cessna and Beechcraft. In March Textron bought Beechcraft for $1.4 billion and placed the Cessna and Beechcraft brands under the newly formed Textron Aviation, headed by Ernest as president and CEO.
Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group is one of the oldest and most respected names in aerospace through its long history, consisting primarily of military work. While it has been involved in business aviation for many years, and has 40 years’ experience in performing MRO work on Cessna Citations, the group is now dramatically expanding its footprint in the sector.
The world’s leading business jet manufacturers posted financial results for the first quarter of 2014 in the weeks leading up to this year’s EBACE show. Overall, the latest numbers are somewhat encouraging in the context of the industry’s slow recovery but there are significant variations in the details. Here AIN provides a summary of the main conclusions.
Bombardier Aerospace: Bizjet Deliveries Up, Backlog Grows