First Flight For Hawker 400XPR Upgrade

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Hawker Beechcraft, fresh off a week in the news over its Chapter 11 filing, announced on Monday that its 400XPR test aircraft has flown for the first time. The light jet flew with Williams International FJ44-4A-32 engines and winglets, which are available as an upgrade for current owners of the Hawker 400 or as an option for new buyers. The package will be certified in September. Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics also will be made available. Hawker spokesman Christi Tannahill said there is "great demand" for the 400XPR upgrade, which will enhance performance, cost and reliability. Hawker also said it is moving forward with its case in bankruptcy court and has received approval to continue to pay employees, vendors, and suppliers for goods and services delivered after the commencement of the Chapter 11 case.

The company said it will utilize a commitment for $400 million in debtor-in-possession financing, negotiated as part of the prearranged restructuring, to meet these obligations. The court's approvals will allow Hawker to continue to operate during the reorganization process. Last week, CEO Robert Miller said the reorganization will make Hawker a more competitive company.