Nextant Aerospace has achieved the first phase in its Challenger 604XT remanufacturing program: STC approval of the Rockwell Collins touchscreen Pro Line Fusion flight deck upgrade on the large-cabin Bombardier business jet. Subsequent phases will include new cabin floor plans, a composite interior shell with LED lighting, oversized tables, and performance enhancements such as a 500-nm range extension and increasing its maximum altitude to FL450, from FL410.
The 604XT is the first business jet to be certified with touchscreen panel displays; other business jets with touchscreens use them for avionics control and, in the case of the Gulfstream G500/G600, also to replace overhead systems buttons and switches. Honeywell and Garmin touchscreen-controlled avionics are becoming increasingly popular in jets, but Rockwell Collins is the first to certify touchscreen panel-mounted displays in business aircraft—King Airs and now the 604XT. Honeywell is also offering touchscreen panel displays as a potential upgrade for Epic-based flight decks.
The 604XT program is being done “in collaboration” with Rockwell Collins and Bombardier. Avionics features of the Pro Line Fusion upgrade include the touchscreens, synthetic vision with airport dome, WAAS/LPV, ADS-B Out, and a Mid-Continent Instruments Standby Attitude Module. Options will include Safe Flight AutoPower autothrottles, as well as FANS 1/A and ATN B1 datalink (formerly Link 2000+).
According to Nextant, the first customer delivery of a 604XT with the avionics upgrades will take place next month. More than 25 installations have been sold. “We have three aircraft in-house ready for installation, plus seven more scheduled before year-end,” said Nextant Aerospace executive vice president Mark O’Donnell.
The 604XT is Nextant’s third remanufacturing program, joining the 400XT and G90XT programs.