The fourth Cessna Citation Longitude jet flew for the first time last Saturday and joined the test fleet, Textron Aviation said this week. The jet has a fully configured interior, which will be used to evaluate fit and finish as well as environmental controls, pressurization and other cabin technologies. “In addition to further systems testing, this fourth aircraft allows us to evaluate the overall passenger experience in the cabin, which is just as vital as the performance and technology in the cockpit,” said Brad Thress, senior vice president of engineering. The jet took off from the company’s Beech Field in east Wichita for a flight of 3 hours and 20 minutes. The aircraft achieved all of its performance targets, the company said, and is on track to be type-certified later this year.
The first Citation Longitude flew in October 2016, and to date the flight-test program has completed more than 200 flights, accumulating nearly 400 hours. The super-midsize Longitude, which seats up to 12, will be the biggest business jet in the Cessna fleet, with a 6-foot-tall stand-up cabin. The clean-sheet design features a range of up to 3,500 NM, a Garmin G5000 flight deck and FADEC-equipped Honeywell HTF7700L turbofan engines with fully integrated autothrottles.