Textron Aviation and NetJets have reached a purchase agreement for as many as 325 new jets.
Longtime Textron Aviation partner NetJets says it has reached a deal to become the first company to buy Cessna’s new Citation Hemisphere large business jet. The deal is an important milestone for a plane that has suffered delays in development due to problems with its new engine from French supplier Safran.
“We’re confident that we’re going to have a world-class power plant that’s going to drive the kind of efficiencies and maintenance and durability that will make it a fabulous product,” Textron Aviation CEO Scott Donnelly said Monday.
Regardless of the setbacks, he said Textron will be able to ultimately deliver the product it promised.
NetJets CEO Adam Johnson said the deal has been a long time in the making.
"This will be the first aircraft that we'll actually be, and quietly already been, co-designing," he said.
The Hemisphere is expected to take its first flight in 2020 and be ready for delivery by 2025. The jet will be Textron’s first attempt to break into the large business jet market.
Along with the 150 Hemispheres, NetJets also agreed to purchase as many as 175 Longitude jets beginning next year. The company also recently placed its 100th Cessna Citation order.
Brian Grimmett, based at KMUW in Wichita, is a reporter focusing on the environment and energy for the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KMUW, Kansas Public Radio, KCUR and High Plains Public Radio covering health, education and politics. Follow him on Twitter @briangrimmett.
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