D-Jet (With Chute?) -- Price Climbs 40 Percent

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Diamond Aircraft announced Sunday that its D-Jet personal jet will have an introductory price of $1.38 million -- 40 percent more than the $850,000 figure that was named when the plane first went into development. Company officials also told reporters attending the annual Diamondfest at the company's North American headquarters in London Ontario, Canada, that the price jump is tied closely to buyers seeking all available options and among those, the company now intends to offer a whole-plane parachute system as an option on the 315-knot five-place single-engine jet. The cockpit will also come adorned with a massive glass panel display -- two 12-inch PFDs and a central 15-inch MFD. AVweb contributor Rick Durden was there for the unveiling. Click here to find access to his personal observations and incisive opinions along with access to AVweb's complete NewsWire. Of course, there were lots of questions about the big price hike and company officials said it was in response to customer demand. They said most customers are ordering the planes loaded with every possible option, anyway, so they might as well all be built that way. The first 50 airplanes are slated for delivery by the end of 2008.

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