500th Cessna Citation XL/XLS Delivered
Cessna last week said it delivered the 500th Citation Model 560, or Citation XL/XLS, noting that more Citation XL and XLS aircraft have been delivered than any other corporate business jet in the world since deliveries began in 1998. The 500th example went to European Flight Service AB, the largest jet charter operation in Sweden. And it was a fitting customer. “European Flight Service was the first commercial company in Europe to put an XL into service in 2003,” said Cessna Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing Roger Whyte. “There have been many others that have followed suit. We took orders for 36 XLS aircraft in Europe for 2005 alone.” The operator's fleet includes a Citation XL, Citation VII and Citation Sovereign. European Flight Service has an additional XLS and Sovereign aircraft on order. According to Cessna, the XL/XLS worldwide fleet will near 1 million operating hours in October.
“The XL we have is a workhorse for our short-range charter operations,” said European Flight Service’s Owner, Managing Director, Flight Operations Director, and Chief Pilot Stephen W.S. Diapere. “It flies an average of 550 hours per year. Our customers like the standup cabin, and our company likes the economy, purchase price, operating cost, ease of maintenance and field service support. Our experience with the XL leads us to believe this new XLS will be a complement to our fleet.” Cessna's 560 series began with the Citation XL, which was granted FAA type certification in April 1998. The XL received a block point change in 2004 and became the XLS. The XLS can cruise at up to 434 KTAS, has a range of more than 1,800 nautical miles, climbs direct to FL450 in 29 minutes, and can land on runways as short as 3,560 feet.