ORLANDO, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, and NetJets® Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway company, today announced fleet agreements for the option to purchase up to 175 super-midsize Cessna Citation Longitude® aircraft and up to 150 Cessna Citation Hemisphere® aircraft. NetJets has operated a fleet of nearly 500 Cessna Citations since 1984, and this agreement could increase the fleet to more than 800 aircraft over the next 10 to 15 years. The option to purchase the Hemisphere distinguishes NetJets as the launch customer for Textron Aviation’s revolutionary, clean sheet large-cabin aircraft.
“We are proud to expand our relationship with NetJets once again through this significant milestone for the Citation Longitude and Citation Hemisphere,” said Scott Donnelly, Chairman, President and CEO of Textron Inc., speaking at the annual National Business Aviation Association’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE). “The Longitude fleet will build on the success NetJets has enjoyed with the Citation Latitude midsize jet. Through its class-leading performance, operating efficiency and the quietest cabin experience in its category, the Citation Longitude redefines the super-midsize segment. The Citation Hemisphere will follow with its revolutionary approach to performance and the large cabin experience.”
“As the worldwide leader in private aviation, we seek out products that raise the bar and deliver an exceptional travel experience to our owners and their passengers,” said Adam Johnson, NetJets Chairman and CEO. “As we anticipate placing these orders, we look back to the first order we placed for the Citation Latitude back in 2015. We have just placed an order for our 100th Latitude and, just as we did then, NetJets takes entering into this fleet agreement seriously, and we look forward to the day we can say we took delivery of our 175th Citation Longitude. We see the same revolutionary attributes of the Citation Latitude and Longitude in the Citation Hemisphere and are delighted to become its launch customer. The Hemisphere delivers long overdue innovation to the $30 – 40 million large-cabin aircraft category. We look forward to working with Textron Aviation to lead the industry and launch an aircraft that marks yet another new chapter in NetJets — and aviation — history.”
With an enduring relationship of more than 30 years, Textron Aviation and NetJets equip discerning customers with class-leading, safe and reliable aviation travel experiences worldwide. Beginning with the industry-defining Citation SII, NetJets has owned and operated nearly 500 Citation aircraft, including the Citation Latitude, Sovereign, Excel/XLS and X.
NetJets has the option to take first deliveries of the Citation Longitude in the second half of 2019, with additional options on Longitude aircraft exercised over the following 10 to 15 years.
Textron Aviation and NetJets are designing a version of the clean sheet Citation Hemisphere to meet the discerning standards of NetJets Owners. This side-by-side collaboration enables NetJets and Textron to join together to create a world-class aviation experience for NetJets Owners. They are also working with Safran to achieve performance characteristics that enable Hemisphere to reach far off destinations with greater speed and reliability.
“We have worked steadfastly with Safran to understand the development stages of the Silvercrest engine,” said Brad Thress, Textron Aviation senior vice president, Engineering. “Throughout our review, we have remained confident that Silvercrest is the best engine choice for the Hemisphere and are pleased to see Safran’s enduring commitment to delivering it on time and on target.”
To date, NetJets operates a fleet of 75 Citation Latitudes and expects to have 100 in service by mid-2019. Owner demand has ranked the Latitude as the best-selling aircraft in the NetJets portfolio, further establishing the Latitude as Textron Aviation’s best-selling mid-size jet, outselling its nearest competitor 4:1. Rounding out the current NetJets inventory of nearly 500 Cessna aircraft are the Citation Excel/XLS, Citation Sovereign and Citation X.
About the Citation Longitude
With a range of 3,500 nautical miles (6,482 kilometers) and full fuel payload of 1,600 pounds (726 kilograms), Textron Aviation designed the Citation Longitude to elevate passenger expectations in the super-midsize class by delivering a quiet cabin, a low cabin altitude (5,950 feet/1,814 meters), more standard features and an elegant yet comfortable, bespoke interior. With seating for up to 12 passengers — including an optional crew jump seat — the Longitude features a standard double-club configuration of fully berthable seats, delivering the most legroom in the super-midsize class. A stand-up, 6-foot tall flat-floor cabin and a streamlined divan enable safe and easy transit along the cabin passageway while a class-leading walk-in baggage compartment accessible throughout the entire flight ensures passengers experience unparalleled convenience. State-of-the-art cabin technology empower passengers to manage their environment and entertainment from any mobile device, while high-speed internet maximizes in-flight productivity.
The clean-sheet design of the Citation Longitude integrates the latest technology throughout the aircraft. Featuring the next evolution of the Garmin G5000 flight deck, Longitude is powered by FADEC-equipped Honeywell HTF7700L turbofan engines featuring fully integrated autothrottles with envelope protection. With Garmin’s new Head-up Display (GHD 2100) and enhanced vision capability, the Citation Longitude facilitates eyes-up flying. The spacious cockpit incorporates easier access and an ergonomic design that fully focuses on crew comfort and efficiency.
No super-midsize jet offers more range, greater payload or higher cruise speed at a lower expected total ownership cost. Textron Aviation also designed the Citation Longitude to feature the longest maintenance intervals in its class — 800 hours or 18 months — expected to make it the most cost-effective aircraft to operate in its category.
About the Citation Hemisphere
For the first time in more than 20 years, the $30-40 million large-cabin jet segment will experience a clean-sheet design aircraft with the introduction of the Citation Hemisphere. The Hemisphere will connect important city pairs while multiple zone cabin configurations deliver the widest cabins in its class and showcase exceptional style and quality with fit and finishes featuring the flexibility to meet a wide array of operator needs. The aircraft’s low cabin altitude will ensure passengers arrive at their destination feeling refreshed after long journeys. The Textron Aviation collaboration with NetJets will also yield a version of the Citation Hemisphere that offers an aviation experience customized to meet the needs of NetJets Owners.
Powered by two Safran Silvercrest engines, the Citation Hemisphere is expected to feature superior handling characteristics for an aircraft this size, incorporating a full fly-by-wire flight control system, delivering the latest design for maximum performance.
About Textron Aviation Inc.
Textron Aviation Inc. is the leading general aviation authority and home to the Beechcraft, Cessna and Hawker brands, which account for more than half of all general aviation aircraft flying. The Textron Aviation brands represent unrivaled innovation, performance and leadership in the industry, and offer an unmatched value proposition rooted in the total ownership experience. Leveraging unparalleled speed-to-market, Textron Aviation provides the most versatile and comprehensive business and general aviation product portfolio in the world through five principal lines of business: business jets, general aviation and special mission turboprop aircraft, high performance piston aircraft, military trainer and defense aircraft and a complete global customer service organization. Textron Aviation has delivered more than 250,000 aircraft in over 143 countries. Its broad range of products include such best-selling aircraft as Citation business jets, King Air and Caravan turboprops and T-6 military trainer aircraft, all of which are backed by the industry’s most capable global service network. For more information, visit www.txtav.com.
About Textron Inc.
Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell, Cessna, Beechcraft, Hawker, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Textron Off Road, Arctic Cat, Textron Systems, and TRU Simulation + Training. For more information, visit: www.textron.com.
NetJets Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway company, is the worldwide leader in private aviation. More than 50 years ago, we launched the world’s first private jet charter and management company. We went on to pioneer shared aircraft ownership—offering the advantages of owning a private jet, without the responsibilities. Today, we continue to innovate from cockpit and cabin to safety and accessibility. As the owner and operator of the world’s largest and most diverse private jet fleet, NetJets hires only the most experienced and accomplished pilots and safety is our first and highest priority. Our full range of aviation options help individuals and businesses do more and miss less via the NetJets®, Executive Jet Management®, and Marquis Jet Card® service brands in North America and Europe. For more information about the world’s most reliable and trusted aviation company, visit netjets.com.
Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements which may project revenues or describe strategies, goals, outlook or other non-historical matters; these statements speak only as of the date on which they are made, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. These statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the risk that NetJets does not exercise its option to acquire a significant number of aircraft; changes in aircraft delivery schedules or cancellations or deferrals of orders; the efficacy of research and development investments to develop new products or unanticipated expenses in connection with the launching of significant new products or programs; the timing of our new product launches or certifications of our new aircraft products; our ability to keep pace with our competitors in the introduction of new products and upgrades with features and technologies desired by our customers; volatility in the global economy or changes in worldwide political conditions that adversely impact demand for our products.