Embraer’s next new business jet, the fly-by-wire Legacy 500, rolled out of the manufacturer’s São José dos Campos headquarters in Brazil on Dec. 23, 2011. The jet’s first flight had been planned by the end of last year, but has been delayed until the third quarter this year due to a software problem with the fly-by-wire flight control system’s remote electronic unit made by Parker Aerospace, according to Embraer.
Embraer ERJ 145 family
Spurred by sluggish demand for light and midsize jets and the threat from Brazil’s Embraer, Cessna has enlarged its midsize cabin cross-section and refreshed one of the lightest jets it builds. The new contenders were revealed last fall in the form of the 680A Latitude midsize and the M2 update of the CJ1+. They compete with, respectively, the Embraer Legacy 450 (slated for certification in late 2014 and service entry in early 2015) and the Phenom 100 (in service since 2009).
American Eagle last month confirmed plans to replace all of its ATR 72 turboprops operating from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport with Embraer ERJ 135s, 140s and 145s. As a result, 14 markets throughout Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas gained all-jet service beginning January 31.
The scramble for precious slots at London Heathrow Airport has spurred a bidding war for struggling UK carrier BMI. Virgin Atlantic Airways has told Lufthansa, BMI’s owner, that it will be able to close the deal more quickly than the International Airlines Group (IAG), which launched a bid for BMI in November.
The growing threat posed to airline and general aviation pilots by laser pointing devices has accelerated efforts to address the problem through regulation and criminal prosecution.
While it has certainly felt the same pressures as its competition, Embraer expects a change in the bizjet market to come soon.
Embraer’s new brand ambassador will be able to forget Rush Hours at airports around the world when he takes delivery of his new Legacy 650 later this year. Famous for his death-defying stunts as much as his acting, Jackie Chan will become the first owner of the aircraft type in China. The aircraft is due for delivery later this year.
Ever since automaker CEOs went private jet-in-hand to Washington seeking bail-out bucks in 2008, business aircraft have become the political pinata of choice for certain members of the elected, who mistakenly see attacking executive contrails as surefire re-election rhetoric.
Authorities in Canada are investigating a September 4 runway excursion at Ottawa International Airport involving a Trans States Airlines Embraer ERJ 145–the third such incident involving an ERJ 145 operated by the St. Louis-based regional airline at the same airfield.
When a Trans States Airlines Embraer ERJ 145 skidded off the runway in Ottawa on September 4 in wet weather, resulting in no injuries, the relatively minor accident at first generated the modest press coverage it deserved. But something seemed familiar about this runway excursion.