Cessna Aircraft Company, a subsidiary of Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, opened the 2015 Asian Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition today announcing a new order for the Citation XLS+ business jet in China.
FT Business Jets Co. Ltd., based in Shanghai, plans to offer charter operations in China, matching the XLS+’s range and efficiency with customers’ business and personal travel needs. The aircraft will be delivered later this year by Cessna-AVIC Aircraft (Zhuhai) Co., Ltd., a Cessna joint venture with China Aviation Industry General Aviation Company Ltd. (CAIGA).
“The Citation XLS+ has gained a reputation globally as a top performer in terms of cost and performance; a reputation that now extends to charter operators in China,” said Bill Schultz, senior vice president, Business Development, China.
“The XLS+ has the cabin size and amenities required for today’s business executive, and it has the performance and operating efficiency unparalleled in the midsize jet segment.”
As part of Cessna’s continued investment in the growth of China’s midsize business jet market, the company is today hosting the first Citation XLS+ Operator Conference for customers in China. The event, held in Shanghai, is focused on sharing best practices for midsize jet ownership and includes Cessna product and aftermarket service experts, and private and charter jet operators.
The Citation XLS+, the latest incarnation in the best-selling Excel-XLS family, was certified for Chinese operations in early 2014 by the Civil Aviation Authority of China (CAAC), and the first deliveries from the Cessna-AVIC (Zhuhai) Co. Ltd. joint venture were celebrated in November.
Cessna and CAIGA formed the joint venture in 2012 to assemble and deliver Citation XLS+ business jets for Chinese customers. Operations in China include final assembly, paint, testing, interior installation, customization, flight testing and delivery.
Business owners consistently have chosen the Citation XLS+ more than any other aircraft in the light midsize category for its unparalleled combination of comfort, ease of operation, range of mission capabilities and favorable operating efficiencies. The aircraft provides customers access from Beijing to Hong Kong and Hong Kong to Shanghai, well within a one-day trip. Inside is the largest cabin in its class with nearly 19 feet (5.64 meters) of length, a dropped aisle that provides 68 inches (173 cm) of height the entire length of the cabin and seating for up to 12 passengers. It travels as fast as 441 knots (817 kilometers/hour) with a range of more than 2,000 nautical miles (3,700 kilometers), departing from runways as short as 3,560 feet (1,085 meters).
More than 6,750 Citations have been delivered to customers around the world since the first Cessna Citation business jet was put into service in 1972. Citations are the largest fleet of business jets in the world and have surpassed 31 million flight hours.