October 21, 2013
By Alton K. Marsh
The Garmin G5000 glass cockpit is now an option for the Hawker/Beechjet 400XPR upgrade. Already offered and certified is a Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics upgrade.
Each component of the 400XPR program will be certified separately. Certifications for the winglet component and the Williams International FJ44-4A-32 engine are pending. The Garmin G5000 modification should be certified in 2015. The upgrade includes several factory-approved airframe modifications.
"From the launch of this program, customers have booked all of the available slots for a factory upgrade that gives them more range, better performance and upgraded technology," said Brian Howell, Beechcraft vice president of aftermarket sales and business development. "We’re seeing that interest grow even more as we add the G5000 option and as the program surpasses performance estimates in our ongoing flight testing. We’re beating the competition at cruise performance and our time to climb is a huge differentiator for the 400XPR."
Beechcraft faces competition from Nextant and Flight Options, companies that also offer modifications to the 400. The two competitors chose a smaller engine. "The Williams International FJ44-4A engines enable the Hawker 400XPR to climb directly to FL450 in only 19 minutes at max takeoff weight, whereas the Nextant and Flight Options modification (which uses the smaller -3A engine) requires some 70 minutes at lower altitudes before it can step climb to realize the greater efficiencies without sacrificing speed," a statement from Beechcraft said.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
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