Large-Cabin Market Continues To Grow

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The market is looking better than expected for business jet manufacturers but mostly for those with large-cabin, long-range aircraft, according to the annual Honeywell Business Aviation Outlook. The analysis, which is released every year on the eve of the National Business Aviation Association convention, says large-cabin platforms will account for 80 percent of the money spent on new business aircraft in the near term. "The trend toward larger cabin aircraft with ever-increasing range expectations and advanced avionics is seen more strongly than ever in this year's survey," said Rob Wilson, the president of Honeywell Business and General Aviation. The continuing shift to larger aircraft is behind Honeywell's increased revenue expectations for business jet OEMs.

The numbers have been skewed somewhat by delays in some development programs. "The reduced deliveries expected in 2013 are largely due to new program delays rather than deterioration in demand," the report said. More good news for manufacturers is the relatively robust recovery of the North American market. The report says 61 percent of new business aircraft are heading to North American buyers in 2013, up a healthy 8 percent.  "Stronger new aircraft acquisition plans in North America are welcome news and should support industry momentum as some of the higher growth regions work through a year of modestly reduced growth rates," Wilson said.