Industry Veteran Heads Up Grob’s U.S. Ops Claude Chidiac, who held senior positions with Bombardier and started as a consultant for Grob Aerospace in November last year, is now acting president of Grob’s U.S. operations.
Grob Aerospace is facing the possibility of a further delay to the certification of its new SPn light jet. During the first week of this month, the German manufacturer will be re-evaluating the status of the flight-test program to decide whether to push back the target of completing type certification by the end of next year’s second quarter.
The PlaneSense fractional ownership program has ordered 25 Grob SPns, with deliveries for what is to be the program’s biggest deal to date to begin toward the end of next year. The aircraft will be configured for six-seat executive use, with a large galley at the front of the cabin and an enclosed lavatory to the rear.
In growing numbers, interiors specialists are taking cues from the automotive industry. The latest is German light-jet developer Grob Aerospace, which unveiled the new executive cabin mockup for its Grob SPn utility jet last month at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh. The interior was designed by Porsche Design Studio of Bietigheim-Bissingen, Germany, with the U.S. market in mind.
Irish entrepreneur Dermot Desmond has acquired a majority shareholding in the entities that compose ExecuJet Aviation Group, which provides charter/management services, sales for Bombardier Business Aircraft and Grob Aerospace, aircraft maintenance services and operates FBOs on four continents. Niall Olver will remain ExecuJet’s CEO, while Desmond will become chairman of the company.
Grob Aerospace, which last month at EBACE in Geneva showcased its six-passenger fuselage mockup of the Grob SPn light business jet with a new cabin interior from the Porsche Design Studio, said that it had firm orders for more than 60 SPns, equivalent to the first two years’ production. European certification is expected in April, with U.S. certification to follow three months later.
Grob Aerospace (Booth No. 1277) is showcasing a six-passenger fuselage mockup of the Grob SPn light business jet with a new cabin interior from the Porsche Design Studio. The mockup includes the aft lavatory configuration and the SPn cockpit, similarly created by Porsche Design.
In yesterday's report about the change of ownership at ExecuJet Aviation ("Desmond Buys Majority Share of Execujet"), AINonline incorrectly reported that Dermot Desmond is the majority owner of Grob Aerospace. In fact, Mr Desmond holds no shares in Grob Aerospace and has no connection with the company.
The first business jet from Grob Aerospace made its maiden flight yesterday. With former Diamond Aircraft test pilot Gérard Guillaumaud in the left seat and Tore Reimers as the copilot, the SPn Utility Jet took off at 11:14 a.m. from Allgäu Airport in southern Germany. The main objective of the 66-minute first hop was to test system functionality and evaluate the aircraft’s handling characteristics.
The flight-test program of the Grob Aerospace G180 SPn Utility Jet is progressing well, company officials said yesterday during a briefing at its Tussenhausen-Mattsies, Germany headquarters. Attendees also got the chance to see the prototype fly. Between its maiden flight on July 20 and September 7, the airplane has logged some 24 sorties for a total of 23 flight hours.