It’s one of those problems providers might like to see but that can be exasperating for their customers–more demand than capacity. The completion and refurbishment industry in the U.S. is struggling to keep up with demand as sales of new and used business aircraft continue to grow, and now Canadian shops are facing the same challenge.
Bombardier Global Express
Zurich-based charter company Comlux took possession last month of an Airbus A318 Elite, making it the first to operate the type. The aircraft will be outfitted with a VIP cabin that seats up to 18 passengers by Lufthansa Technik in Hamburg, which is due to deliver the completed aircraft this quarter. The Elite is a 4,000-nm-range jet intended to compete with the Gulfstream G550 and Global Express.
Midcoast Aviation, a long-time center for the green completion of highly individualized Bombardier business jet interiors, has secured another 48 positions, bringing to
90 the total number of aircraft scheduled for completion by 2012.
Engaging in some preshow one-upmanship, Canadian business jet manufacturer Bombardier on Saturday celebrated a transatlantic speed record for its long-range Global 5000 that was slightly faster and slightly longer than a similar record flown only three weeks before by bitter chief rival Gulfstream.
Gulfstream officials yesterday got a chuckle out of claims by rival Bombardier that the Canadian manufacturer’s Global 5000 business jet beat their own Savannah, Georgia-built G450 on a recent speed-record flight.
Demonstrating that Boeing and Airbus aren’t the only bitter rivals in the aerospace schoolyard, Bombardier yesterday issued a public challenge to Gulfstream by proposing the two commit to the idea of holding a race.
Dubai International Airport now has not one but two purpose-built support facilities for business aviation, both located in the duty free zone on the other side of the runway from the airshow. The new Jet Aviation FBO has been operational since May, and will be formally opened at a ceremony here this evening. The new Bombardier/ExecuJet Aviation facility was inaugurated yesterday and began operations just this month.
It’s one of those problems the industry likes to see–more demand than capacity. The completion and refurbishment industry in the U.S. is struggling to keep up with the demand as sales of new and used business aircraft continue to grow, and now Canadian shops are facing the same challenge.
The number of business jets registered in Middle Eastern countries has grown by about one-fifth over the past 10 years. By the standards of other still emerging markets like Europe (45 percent growth over the same period), the Middle East’s 18-percent fleet growth doesn’t inspire awe. It does, however, dwarf the 8-percent hike seen in Asia–a market over which most business aircraft makers salivate.
Gold Air International has ordered two new Bombardier Global 5000s in a deal valued at close to $80 million. The UK executive charter operator is to receive the long-range jets between late 2008 and early 2009, allowing it to take on full-blown intercontinental missions.