Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, today announced its plans to showcase its versatile product lineup at this week’s Middle East and North Africa Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) conference in Dubai, including the show debut of the Cessna Citation Latitude midsize business jet. Also on display will be the Cessna Grand Caravan EX and the Beechcraft King Air 350i turboprops.
“Textron Aviation supports an expanding fleet of more than 300 jets and turboprops in the Middle East utilized throughout the region in various business and special mission applications,” said Kriya Shortt, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing. “We’re proud to be bringing our best-selling midsize business jet, the Citation Latitude, to the show this year. The aircraft has experienced tremendous success with 40 aircraft delivered and more than 12,000 fleet hours amassed in just over a year. Its reliability, efficiency and total ownership value make it an ideal business tool for operators in the Middle East and throughout the world.”
The Citation Latitude has a range of 2,700 nautical miles, affords the most open, spacious, bright and refined cabin environment in the midsize category and provides a 5,950-foot cabin altitude at the aircraft’s maximum operating altitude of 45,000 feet. With standard seating configurations, the Latitude can comfortably accommodate up to nine passengers.
An investment focus driven by customer comfort, the Latitude is the first of the company’s new three-aircraft Citation family of larger business jets, which also includes the super-midsize Citation Longitude and the large cabin Citation Hemisphere, both of which are under development.
“We expect this family of aircraft will be ideal for meeting the high demand for larger business jets in the Middle East where we’ve experienced excellent market reception of our Citations,” said Shortt.
The clean-sheet design of the Citation Longitude integrates the latest technology throughout the aircraft, which is expected to bring customers the lowest ownership costs in this class. The company recently announced the aircraft’s improved range of 3,500 nautical miles, an increase of 100 nautical miles, and full fuel payload of 1,600 pounds, an increase of 100 pounds. From Dubai, the Longitude will be able to fly non-stop routes to key destinations such as London, Beijing or Singapore. Certification is expected in 2017.
The Citation Hemisphere, which will seat up to 19 passengers, has the widest cabin in its class at 102 inches with three zones. The aircraft, with an anticipated first flight in 2019, will be powered by Safran Aircraft Engine’s latest-generation Silvercrest engine, operated with Honeywell Aerospace’s advanced Primus Epic cockpit technologies and integrated with full fly-by-wire flight control system incorporating components provided by Thales. The 4,500 nautical-mile Hemisphere will travel non-stop from Dubai to Lisbon, Marrakech, Johannesburg, Jakarta or Tokyo.
The Cessna and Beechcraft turboprop platforms have proven to be ideally suited to the region’s needs, due to their ample range, solid load capacity and flexible capabilities. The Grand Caravan EX which will be on display has a spacious and easily reconfigurable cabin, high useful load of more than 3,500 pounds, large cargo door and the ability to operate from short, unimproved surfaces, making it particularly well-suited for the region’s business and special mission needs. The aircraft can also be equipped with floats for amphibious operations.
The Beechcraft King Air 350i to be on display this week is equipped with the new Pro Line Fusion avionics system and cabin upgrades. The one-of-a-kind, intuitive flight deck enhances the flight experience while reducing pilot workload. The Fusion-equipped King Air 350i features three interchangeable 14-inch, high-resolution displays with touch-screen capability, synthetic vision, dual multi-sensor flight management system and an open and scalable architecture for future upgrades.
Textron Aviation offers the largest lineup of special mission platforms in the industry, with the entire product range of Beechcraft and Cessna products available in special mission configurations. From piston-engine to turboprop aircraft, and even Citation jets, Textron Aviation can provide a customized aviation solution for nearly any mission profile including air ambulance, float operations, flight inspection, aerial surveillance, training and utility transport.