For all the excitement that business aviation is stirring up among Chinese high-net-worth individuals, there are two groups of products that they do not seem ready to embrace: light jets and pre-owned aircraft. For now, the market remains resolutely focused on larger, long-range jets and brand-new models ordered straight from the factory.
Cessna is making rapid progress with its efforts to operate in China through joint ventures formed with China Aviation Industry General Aircraft Co. (CAIGA), the Wichita-based company said today at ABACE in Shanghai. The joint venture with CAIGA involves building Cessna 208 Grand Caravan EXs in Shijiazhuang and Cessna Citation XLS+s in Zhuhai for the Chinese market.
Cessna Aircraft (Chalet 190) announced here at ABACE 2013 yesterday that sales are up 50 percent in China from 2011 through 2012, and up in Asia Pacific overall. Meanwhile, the company is making rapid progress with its efforts to operate in China through joint ventures formed with China Aviation Industry General Aircraft Co. (CAIGA) in Shijiazhuang and Zhuhai. The joint venture with CAIGA involves building Cessna 208 Grand Caravan EXs (Shijiazhuang) and Cessna Citation XLS+ business jets (Zhuhai) for the Chinese market.
Production of Cessna Aircraft’s new Citation Latitude is on schedule, and the company expects that full airframes will be on the manufacturing lines by year-end. The midsize business jet is scheduled to fly in the first quarter of next year. The Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer has already started building test articles, and has moved from engineering, analysis and modeling to cutting metal. Meanwhile, Cessna started a 19-city tour in the U.S. last week that showcases a Citation Latitude cabin mockup.
Maybe for general aviation to survive, we need more disruption. An article published in Wired magazine (Clayton Christensen Wants to Transform Capitalism, by Jeff Howe) discussed how successful companies often fail to recognize that new companies with “disruptive innovations” are about to take over their marketplace.
Cessna Aircraft rolled out the 400th production Citation CJ3 from its production facility in Wichita yesterday. The light business jet is in its ninth year of service, Cessna noted. “This milestone is testimony to the CJ line,” said Don Beverlin, business leader for the CJ line, which currently includes the CJ2+, CJ3 and CJ4. “The Cessna operators who build and the technicians who service the CJ products take great pride in providing the customer with a safe, reliable product that meets all their transportation needs.
The FAA is adopting an airworthiness directive (AD) for the Cessna 750 Citation X prompted by reports of loss of displayed airspeed.
The positive momentum for business aircraft flying in January apparently didn’t continue into February, with flight activity in this segment falling 4.4 percent year-over-year last month, according to TraqPak data released on Tuesday by aviation services company Argus.
Cessna Aircraft plans to expand its worldwide sales force by nearly 50 percent and currently has nearly 40 aircraft sales job openings listed on its careers page, the company announced today. As part of this effort, the company is placing an emphasis on decentralized satellite offices in global markets where Cessna’s presence is established or where the company sees growth opportunities.
Cessna Aircraft rolled out the first New Citation Sovereign yesterday from its Wichita manufacturing facility. Announced in October at the NBAA Convention, the upgraded Sovereign features improved cabin cooling, Garmin G5000 avionics with autothrottles, a new cabin management system and winglets.