WICHITA, Kan., 13 June 2012. Cessna Aircraft Co. in Wichita, Kan., is selling as many as 150 Citation Latitude business jets to business aviation specialist NetJets Inc. in Columbus, Ohio, for the NetJets fleet of fractional-ownership private jets. The Citation Latitude seats eight to nine passengers and accommodates a crew of two. Deliveries will begin in 2016. The deal is potentially worth about $2.24 billion.
The sale of the Citation Latitude general aviation aircraft to NetJets happened just before Monday's blockbuster sale of 75 Bombardier Challenger 300 series jets and 25 Bombardier Challenger 605 series jets to NetJets, with options for 125 additional Challenger 300 and 50 Challenger 605 jets.
NetJets, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. in Omaha, Neb., specializes in fractional ownership and rental of private business jets. Fractional ownership means NetJets customers buy a share of a business jet, rather than an entire plane, which gives them guaranteed access to NetJets aircraft for a certain number of days or hours per year.
Currently, NetJets owns and operates more than 250 Citations including the Citation Encore, Citation XLS+, Citation Sovereign, Citation X — and soon the Citation Latitude, which was announced in 2011. First flight of the Citation Latitude will be in mid-2014, and the business jet is expected to enter service in 2015.
The Citation Latitude, which Cessna positions between the Citation XLS+ and Citation Sovereign, will cruise at speeds to nearly 510 miles per hour at altitudes as high as 45,000 feet. It will have maximum range of 2,300 nautical miles, and be able to take off on runways as short as 3,900 feet.
Avionics for the Latitude is the Garmin G5000 touchscreen glass flight deck, which has as many as four displays. Touchkeys help pilots locate and access aircraft functions, which include navigation and communication systems, traffic surveillance systems, flight management systems, electronic checklist entries, and remote audio/intercom system, as well as optional charting, traffic, weather, entertainment, and custom display options.
Rather than mechanical knobs, buttons, and selector switches, the Garmin G5000 uses large, WXGA high-resolution displays that serve as primary flight displays (PFD) or multifunction displays (MFD). The displays also function in multi-pane mode, displaying PFD and MFD side-by-side on the same screen.
The Garmin G5000 PFD provides a panoramic view of the avionics synthetic vision technology. Using the system’s terrain alerting database, SVT enhances situational awareness by creating a virtual reality depiction of ground and water features, obstacles, and traffic in proximity to the aircraft, even in solid IFR or nighttime VFR conditions.
The secondary display divides MFD capabilities into two vertical pages that enables pilots to show airway charts and approach plates at the same time, satellite weather and flight planning, traffic, radar, TAWS alerts, and video inputs.
The Citation Latitude, which costs $14.9 million, offers a fuel payload of 1,000 pounds, and will be able to climb to 43,000 feet in 26 minutes.