Dramatically better fuel economy and range coupled with attractive pricing and faster and less expensive completion options could rekindle Boeing’s (Booth 1598) sluggish single-aisle BBJ programs, if customers can step into the middle of a flood of airline orders and pry aircraft off the assembly line.
Boeing 737 Next Generation
Singapore-based aircraft leasing company BOC Aviation said it was responding to Asian airline customers that are expanding or replacing their older aircraft by placing its largest-ever order with Boeing.
The first order for the new BBJ Max 8 model in March was a major breakthrough for Boeing Business Jets in its efforts to convince buyers of the value that the new generation of 737, with its more efficient CFM International Leap-1B engines, will deliver to VIP operators. The airframer believes the additional range and cabin space provided by the new Max 8 will give the BBJ family a significant extra edge at the top end of the business aviation market.
Boeing Business Jets (Chalet 7) announced last week the first sale of its new BBJ Max 8 executive airliner. Burbank, Calif.-based Avjet Corporation negotiated the deal on behalf of the purchaser, a current BBJ operator.
“Our VIP customers are always demanding new improvements in comfort, speed and range,” said Steve Taylor, president of BBJ Aircraft Division, which is based in Seattle, Wash. “The BBJ Max will extend our lead in this segment and ensures our customers getting the best of both worlds.”
At ABACE last year, Boeing Business Jets (BBJ) marked the service entry of a BBJ owned by charter operator Nanshan Jet Co., which is based in Yanti, China. This year BBJ and Nanshan Jet are partnering on their presence at ABACE 2014 and are also cohosting a dinner for select customers, according to Chuck Colburn, BBJ director of marketing.
Boeing received the launch order for the Boeing Business Jet Max yesterday. The order, from an undisclosed existing BBJ operator, is for a BBJ Max 8, a derivative based on the 737 Max 8.
“We are honored that an existing BBJ customer has become the first to select the BBJ Max,” said Boeing Business Jets president Steve Taylor. “The BBJ Max provides more room, longer range and produces fewer emissions than its nearest competition, making it an ideal choice for today’s BBJ customers.”
The FAA proposed an airworthiness directive last week on the autothrottle computers installed on the Boeing 737-600/700/700C/800/900 to correct a glitch that in 2009 allowed a faulty radar altimeter aboard a Turkish Airlines 737 to tell the autothrottles to revert to idle thrust while the aircraft was still on final approach. The aircraft crashed in Amsterdam, killing nine people and injuring 117.
Boeing said it has completed aerodynamics, engine and weight audits that together have given it a clearer picture of the future operating performance of the new 737 Max. The manufacturer now says the re-engined narrowbody will burn 14 percent less fuel than today’s 737-800NG, one percent better than it previously estimated.
Boeing has increased its estimate of the operating performance of the 737 Max, saying the re-engined narrowbody will burn 14 percent less fuel than the current 737NG consumes. In July, the manufacturer said the 737 Max with new CFM Leap-1B turbofans will be 13 percent more fuel efficient.
If you want to see the inside of a really big business jet–one that’s the size of an airliner–at the NBAA 2013 static display at Henderson Executive Airport, you may encounter a silk rope draped across the handrails at the bottom of the passenger stairs. A professionally attired man or woman standing by the rope will explain that the aircraft is being shown and then politely suggest, “Please come back later.” Later could take a long time.
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