Gulfstream Aerospace has already signed purchase agreements for two or three G650ERs, president Larry Flynn told AIN today at EBACE. The company announced the $2 million extended-range option for its flagship G650 on Monday. “We’ve just scratched the surface of the G650 customer base,” he said, explaining that Gulfstream did not tell its customers about the upgrade before the announcement. He added that the Savannah, Ga.-based OEM also signed an agreement for a G450 with an Africa-based customer yesterday at the show.
Business Aviation » Business Aviation Aircraft
News and issues relating to business, aircraft, primarily turbine-engine powered airplanes and helicopters.
Daher-Socata (Booth 6540) has already delivered 12 examples of the new TBM 900 turboprop single and is planning on handing over another 39 this year. Four production slots are still available in 2014 for the $3.711 million per aircraft, CEO Stéphane Mayer said at an EBACE press conference on Monday.
As of May 16, 11 aircraft had been delivered in North America and one in Europe. A handful are to enter into service in 2014 in other regions. North America maintains a dominant position in Daher-Socata’s order book, while the Asian market remains very slow.
Embraer Executive Jets has brought five aircraft to Geneva for the EBACE show as the company continues to expand its business aviation portfolio. The ultra-large Lineage 1000E is making its show debut, sporting a new interior among other enhancements that include options for autoland and an enhanced vision system. While the midsize Legacy 500 made its EBACE debut last year, it is the first time that show-goers can see it with a fully fitted cabin interior.
Nextant Aerospace has been pleasantly surprised by the level of interest shown in Europe for its 400XTi remanufactured light jet, of which six are currently flying on the continent, and forthcoming G90XT turboprop. The company expects that interest will continue to grow, and has expanded its sales network in the continent.
Fly Comlux has added an Airbus ACJ318 to its managed fleet. The aircraft was previously managed by another operator but is now part of the Comlux stable in the Middle East. It is operated purely for its owner and will not be available for charter.
Fractional-share provider NetJets Europe (Booth 6656) expects to receive its first new Bombardier Challenger 350, built to the specifications of NetJets’s Signature Series, in mid-2015. NetJets U.S. will begin taking deliveries of the model this summer. Additional aircraft on order are planned for delivery over the next few years.
As scheduled, Pilatus Aircraft opened the orderbook for the PC-24 twinjet yesterday at EBACE 2014 and all day long at the Pilatus booth chairman Oscar Schwenk and CEO Markus Bucher signed contracts with avid buyers. The first contract was inked by Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, with an order for four PC-24s. U.S. fractional-share PC-12 operator PlaneSense placed an order for six PC-24s, and other buyers included Falcon Aviation Services of the UAE, with two; Luxembourg-based Jetfly, four; U-Haul International in the U.S., two; and many others.
Gama Charters has hired 100 pilots to support ongoing deliveries of Beechcraft King Air 350i aircraft ordered by private aviation membership club Wheels Up, and plans to recruit 100 more as the twin-engine turboprops roll off the assembly line in Wichita. Gama Charters, the U.S. subsidiary of Gama Aviation (Booth 5551), of Farnborough, UK, dry leases and serves as exclusive operator of the Wheels Up-registered 350i aircraft for member flights in the U.S. Northeast, Southeast and Southwest.
Bombardier Aerospace unveiled a full-scale mockup of its Global 7000 yesterday on its stand at EBACE 2014 (Booth 6656). The Canadian manufacturer claims this is the largest-ever business jet mockup–at 111 feet long–and said it “showcases the aircraft’s spaciousness, luxury and comfort.” The massive mockup was shipped from the UK to the European mainland and Geneva via boat and truck.
Textron Aviation (Booth 6113), here for the first time since it integrated Cessna, Beechcraft and Hawker, has a number of programs in development or just certified. The transition to a unified company is taking place in customer support, too, with maintenance technicians undergoing cross-training on all of each brand’s models. However, while Hawker jets continue to be supported, the company has no plan to produce any more aircraft under the brand, Textron Aviation president and CEO Scott Ernest said during a press conference on Tuesday.