Van Nuys, Calif.-based MRO provider Western Jet Aviation (Booth 4223) has partnered with MJets, a Southeast Asia business aviation service provider, to establish a new FAA Part 145 maintenance facility at the latter’s FBO at Don Muang International Airport in Bangkok, Thailand. The MJets operation is currently a Cessna-appointed service facility and also services Gulfstream aircraft from the G200 through the G650.
The strong investment Rolls-Royce has made in customer service was vindicated by the results of this year’s AIN Product Support Survey, which placed the engine maker in joint number-one position. Last year the engine maker established a new operational service desk in Dahlewitz, Germany, and made a series of reforms aimed at making its product service delivery team more responsive.
The new Gulfstream G500 and G600 business jets, unveiled last week at the company’s headquarters in Savannah, Ga., not only ushered in a new era for the OEM, but also provided another validation of the expertise in fly-by-wire (FBW) control systems for Thales. The French avionics company is supplying the FBW systems for both aircraft, building on its work in providing the system for the G650. Thales also provides the FBW system for Gulfstream’s flagship ultra long-range G650ER.
Less than a week after the surprise launch of Gulfstream’s new G600 and G500 large-cabin jets, the company is showing off a full-size cabin and cockpit mockup of the G600 at the NBAA static display at Orlando Executive Airport. The G600 and the slightly smaller G500 were announced October 14 following a highly secretive five-year development program. A G500 already is assembled, taxiing and preparing for its first flight early next year.
Gulfstream Aerospace is opening a new sales and design center in Long Beach, Calif. The facility will support West Coast customers with the selection of cabin interior and paint options for their aircraft. The manufacturer’s 325,000-sq-ft Long Beach center has been open since 1986 and includes a completions center for the G550 and G650 models, as well as a service center for all Gulfstream models.
Gulfstream Aerospace (Booth 257) employed a variety of new plants, processes and procedures to speed completions of its new G650 flagship and get the aircraft into the customers’ hands sooner. The G650 was announced in 2008 and certified in late 2012. Since then, deliveries of the Mach 0.925 globe-spanning executive jet have set an impressive pace, in no small part due to the used of more monolithic parts on the aircraft and revamped assembly technology.
Gulfstream’s new flagship, the ultra-long-range G650ER, made its airshow debut last month at the Africa Aerospace and Defence show, held at Waterkloof Air Force Base close to the South African capital Pretoria. According to the airframer, the new model, which will offer range of up to 7,500 nm, is set to complete certification during the fourth quarter of 2014, with initial deliveries to start early next year.
By aviation industry standards, Gulfstream Aerospace’s launch last week of its new G500 and G600 aircraft was a well-kept secret, especially since the programs have already been in the works for five years since 2009. Over the past 12 months, the U.S. airframer has seen rival Dassault Falcon refresh its product range with the launch of the new Falcon 5X and 8X models, but Gulfstream insists that its focus has been on boosting choice and the value proposition of its own family of aircraft rather than seeking to keep up with competitors.
During a ceremony this morning at its Savannah, Ga. headquarters, Gulfstream Aerospace took the wraps off the new G500 and G600, which are expected to enter service in 2018 and 2019, respectively. At this morning's ceremony the G500 rolled out under its own power. Both models have a wider cabin cross-section than the G450 and G550, but not quite as wide as that of the G650. The new jets–nestled between the G450, G550 and G650–will also have more composite content than existing Gulfstreams.
Gulfstream Aerospace’s launch today of its new G500 and G600 large-cabin business jets was a well-kept secret, especially since the programs have been in the works for five years. During an event at its Savannah, Ga., headquarters, the company surprised guests by rolling out a prototype of the G500 under its own power.
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