Outlook Good for VLJs
By Molly McMillinAlthough the last year has created numerous challenges in the very light business jet sector, the long-term demand for jets in that segment is high, forecasters and others claim. In the last year, two jet makers--Aviation Technology Group and Adam Aircraft--filed for bankruptcy, while Eclipse Aviation reduced jobs and manufacturing. The problems highlight how hard and costly it is for new manufacturers to construct, certify, and provide an all-new aircraft. However, Cessna Aircraft is increasing production of its Citation Mustang, Embraer is close to certification of its Phenom 100, and Eclipse Aviation still has a strong order book, notes General Aviation Manufacturers Association President and CEO Pete Bunce. Honeywell Aerospace is expecting deliveries of between 7,000 and 8,000 very light jets between 2008 and 2018. The company and others separate the very light jet industry into a couple of categories: entry-level very light jets and very light personal jets. Honeywell predicts shipments of 4,000 entry-level very light jets during the 11-year period. Meanwhile, in the very light personal jet market, it predicts demand ranging between 4,000 and 5,000 planes.
November 12, 2008