Latitude On Track For 2014 First Flight

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Photo: Cessna

Photo: Cessna

Cessna mated the wing to the fuselage of the first prototype of its new Latitude mid-sized business jet last week and says the aircraft is on track to fly in early 2014. Cessna announced the Latitude at the 2011 NBAA convention in Las Vegas as a direct challenge to the Embraer 450 and so far the schedule seems to be getting met. “It is very rewarding to see an aircraft take shape that, until now, you’ve only seen on paper, and the Latitude team is enthusiastically looking forward to the prototype’s first flight in a few months," said Terry Shriner, who's in charge of the Latitude project.

The Latitude is Cessna's biggest Citation and has a wingspan of more than 72 feet and a 77-inch wide stand-up cabin (six feet) that is the widest Cessna has ever built. It'll climb with nine passengers to 43,000 feet in 23 minutes and is among the most long-legged types in its category. The 2,500nm-range will get it from L.A. to New York on a tank of fuel and other city pairs include Rome to Dubai, Houston to Bogota and Singapore to Beijing.