Cessna Demo Mustang Flies

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The first Cessna Mustang not designated for FAA certification testing took flight last week in a two hour and 20 minute flight that put it through all its functionality tests. The aircraft, serial number 003, is the first to come off the production line at Cessna's Independence, Kan., assembly plant (which is where the company's piston singles are made) and is destined to become the customer demonstration aircraft. Revenue-producing aircraft, serial numbers 004 to 015, are on the line in Independence in anticipation of certification by the end of the year and first deliveries in 2007. Cessna has orders for about 240 Mustangs, which will cost about $3 million each, among the most expensive of the so-called very light jets (VLJs). The Mustang program was announced in 2002 and the prototype flew last year, making its first public appearance at EAA AirVenture.