AVwebBiz - Volume 6, Number 23

June 4, 2008

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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Add Another Item to Cessna's To-Do List back to top 
Sponsor Announcement

A Supersonic Cessna?

HalogenGuides Jets, which calls itself the "Insider's Guide to Private Aviation," is reporting that Cessna is working on development of a supersonic business jet. Cessna did not immediately respond to AVweb's request for comment on the report. However, the Web site, which also offers insight on real estate and travel, seems pretty sure that a Cessna SSBJ is on the horizon. In an analysis of the current SSBJ market, the Web site says "An intriguing third player has emerged with the news that business jet stalwarts, Cessna, has entered the ring with a design of its own. Little is known about Cessna's plans at the moment, but the fact that such a reputable private aviation brand is developing a supersonic jet ought to lend some credence to the movement."

The balance of the article deals with Aerion's much-publicized order book for 40 of its $80 million offering and the less well-known but potentially more-developed Quiet Supersonic Transport under development at Lockheed's Skunkworks. The focus of much of the research is on softening the sonic boom but there are inevitable questions about fuel burn and environmental impact. The article says that time savings for the busiest of business people may drive some sales but practicality is unlikely to be the motive for many buying an SSBJ. "For the billionaire boys club, meanwhile, a supersonic private jet will likely be irresistible as the ultimate toy," it opines.

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Waiting with Bated Breath for "The-Jet" back to top 

Cirrus Jet Debut At COPA Migration?

The Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association is busy planning their annual "Migration" to Cirrus Design headquarters in Duluth and they're hoping the company has something new to show them. Last year, Cirrus owners who put a deposit on "the-jet" got the first look at the mock-up at the event and this year COPA hopes they'll be seeing the prototype fly. "While there are no guarantees, many COPA members think the chances are good that Migration attendees will be the first to see not only the mock-up but hopefully the first flying Cirrus jet - in person," says COPA's newsletter.

It should be noted that Cirrus CEO Alan Klapmeier told a news conference at EBACE 2008 in Geneva last month that the prototype, which is nearing completion in Duluth, will be flown on the test pilots' schedule and there will be no pressure to rush the testing to make promotional deadlines. At the same time, he's openly stated his hope that the plane will be ready to show at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh. Since it has to be flown for 25 hours before it can be taken from Duluth, where it will be test flown, the timing of the COPA Migration from July 10 to July 13 (about two weeks later than last year) seems strangely coincidental. Stay tuned ...

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Finding New Ways to Make It Work back to top 

Bombardier, Airbus Outsourcing Parts, Aircraft Manufacture

Bombardier will invest $250 million and create 1,100 jobs in Mexico to build parts for its all-composite Learjet 85, and Airbus is preparing to ship airframe components to China for assembly of its first Chinese-built A320. The moves are not unique, they're just recent -- Boeing has been struggling with outsourcing complications attached to its 787 Dreamliner development for some time. Montreal-based Bombardier's investment in Mexico is an addition to a previously announced plan to invest $200 million in the country by 2012. The company has been producing parts in Mexico for its all-composite business jet since 2006. Bombardier hopes to put the Learjet 85 in service by 2012. For Airbus, the Tianjin assembly line in China should receive major components including a fuselage, wing and empennage soon after June 24 with assembly scheduled to begin on August 18. The logistics of shipping the parts involves barges, ships and road travel and ends at the Chinese final assembly line, which Airbus officials say is a carbon copy of their plant in Hamburg and should be able to produce both A320 and A319 aircraft.

First delivery of a Chinese-built Airbus is expected in June of 2009 to Sichuan Airlines. After successful qualification of the new line, Airbus plans to put out 40 A320s per month with four produced at Tianjin.

Cessna Aircraft Company, the World's Largest General Aviation Manufacturer
Based on unit sales, Cessna Aircraft Company is the world's largest manufacturer of general aviation airplanes. In 2007, Cessna delivered 1,272 aircraft, including 387 Citation business jets, and reported revenues of about $5 billion. Cessna has a current backlog of $12.6 billion. The global fleet of more than 5,100 Citations is the largest fleet of business jets in the world. More information about Cessna Aircraft Company is available at Cessna.com.
Indian Bizjet from Mallya? back to top 

Mallya, EADS In Talks About Bizjet: Indian Press

The Economic Times of India says Indian airline tycoon Vijay Mallya is in talks with EADS Socata to develop a business jet that would be manufactured in India. The newspaper says EADS Socata spokesman Phillipe de Segovia has confirmed that the discussions are taking place and they are not exclusive to Mallya and his group. "We want to look at a global organisation that has service centres in place with tools to market in the country," de Segovia told the Times. Although Mallya declined comment to the Times, the $200 million reportedly pledged to fund the EADS jet joint venture is the same figure cited when Mallya announced his investment in Epic Aircraft at last year's National Business Aviation Association convention in Atlanta. Epic CEO Rick Schrameck responded somewhat cryptically to AVweb's request for comment through his Marketing Coordinator Alice Myers. "He said you should know better than to believe anything you read in the Indian Press," Myers said in an e-mail to AVweb, but she did not elaborate.

According to the Economic Times, EADS has been looking for a business jet partner for at least three years and held discussions with Dallas-based IndUS, which makes single-engine certified and light sport aircraft. Socata recently announced it's considering building an eight-seat twin-engine business aircraft. It says it hasn't decided whether it will be a turboprop or turbofan.

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The Team at Cessna Can Check This One Off the List back to top 

Cessna Sells 88 Aircraft For $750 Million

On the heels of last week's European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE 2008) Cessna has confirmed orders for aircraft totaling nearly $750 million. The three-day event held in Geneva won Cessna orders for 70 Citation business jets, 14 Caravans and four single-engine pistons, including at least one Cessna 172 Skyhawk and one 182 Skylane. Success at the show may in part reflect a weak dollar, which some aircraft brokers claim has since 2000 reversed their sales from 95 percent within North America to 90 percent outside of the U.S. Buyers from Austria (JetAlliance) and Russia (air taxi operator Dexter) took 44 business jets, including orders for 24 Citation Mustang very light jets (VLJs), and one of Europe's most active Caravan sales representatives took six 208B Grand Caravans. Commenting on the sales, Cessna emphasized that "our broad product range allows us to match an aircraft to fit any mission our customers have."

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Proper Training Is What Keeps the Skies Friendly back to top 

Corporate Flight Attendant School Upgraded

It takes a special combination of skills and attitudes to look after the cabin of a corporate aircraft and Beyond and Above Corporate Flight Attendant Training is taking its program up a notch. The company has opened new training facility at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport and is holding an invitation-only reception next week to show off the facility and explain the training. The center is already in operation with a class, whose graduation will be celebrated at the party, undergoing training in a wide range of practical and somewhat more esoteric skills.

For instance, everyone who leaves the academy possesses "exquisite culinary skills, poise, and the sophistication that reflects a meticulous work ethic," not to mention understanding the need for "confidentiality and discretion." But when push comes to shove, it's off with the white gloves, on with the life vest and down the emergency slide to make sure the aircraft is evacuated safely in an emergency.

AVweb Bookstore Features Downloadable Jeppesen Training Manuals
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AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

Charter Booking Comes of Age in the Internet Era

File Size 5.6 MB / Running Time 6:04

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

We've been doing it for about a decade, and for anyone who travels, online booking of airline flights is practically second nature. But the complexities of charter and business aircraft bookings have made the transition to online reservations a little more challenging for charters. CharterX CEO Jim Betlyon explains to AVweb's Russ Niles how his company's RealQuote system changes that.

Click here to listen. (5.6 MB, 6:04)

AVweb Insider Blog: Thielert's Flawed Economics (And Why the Company Knows It)

Our analysis of Thielert's new diesel engine pricing shows that the diesels now cost more than twice as much as a turbine engine to maintain. We don't see how this can work, and Paul Bertorelli runs down the logic on our blog, AVweb Insider.

Read more — and, by all means, let us know if there's something we're missing in this picture.

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Who's Where back to top 

Turner Managing Partner Of Flight Resource

Doug Turner

Doug Turner has been named managing partner and chief of experimental sales for Flight Resource, a distributor of MT propellers. Turner was formerly U.S. sales manager for MT.

Todd Simmons New Cirrus VP

Todd Simmons

Todd Simmons recently joined Cirrus Design as Vice President of Marketing. Simmons was the former president and CEO of Cubcrafters and has worked in the airline industry. He's an active pilot and will head up the marketing team.

Cronin Heads Up SimAuthor Sales

Dan Cronin

Dan Cronin has been named director of sales to the U.S. Department of Defense market for SimAuthor, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Westar Aerospace & Defense Group, Inc. The company specializes in software and service products for defense aerospace organizations.

Who's Where? You Tell Us

Get a promotion or a new job? Your colleagues want to know about it, and AVwebBiz can get the word out. Drop us a line about the staff appointment, with a nice recent photo, and we'll do our best to include it in our new section, "Who's Where." The items will be permanently archived on AVweb for future reference, too.

The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

Names Behind the News back to top 

Meet the AVwebBiz Team

AVwebBiz is a weekly summary of the latest business aviation news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

The AVwebBiz team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

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