Flexjet’s fractional jet ownership program recently announced it will become the launch customer for the Bombardier Learjet 85 currently under development. The initial order is for seven airplanes. “Flexjet is thrilled to offer its owners the first opportunity to experience private aviation at its very best aboard the all-new Learjet 85 aircraft,” Fred Reid, Flexjet’s president said.
The Lear 85 will fit nicely into Flexjet’s fleet, which currently includes the Learjet 40 XR, Learjet 45 XR, Learjet 60 XR, Challenger 300 and Challenger 605 business jets. While earlybird incentives are available for the first four airplanes in the Learjet 85 program, the official price tag is $1,137,500 for a 1/16th share airplane, which is capable of carrying up to eight passengers in a double-club seating arrangement. Flexjet, which opened its doors in 1995 and is a division of Bombardier, also announced it will waive early termination fees for current customers with contracts that extend past the delivery of the Learjet 85 who sign up for the new program.
Bombardier claims the mostly carbon-composite airframe allows for more aerodynamic lines and thinner fuselage walls, which maximizes speed, range and cabin size, requires less maintenance and is easier to repair. High-speed cruise is estimated at Mach 0.82 and the airplane is expected to have a range of around 3,000 nautical miles.
While the Learjet 85 will be assembled in Wichita, Kansas, the manufacturing will take place at Bombardier’s facilities in Mexico, Ireland and Canada. Bombardier has selected Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307B turbofan engines to power the Learjet 85 and the panel will be equipped with a Rockwell Collins Pro Line Fusion avionics suite, which includes three 15.1-inch AMLCD (active matrix liquid crystal display) screens. Features include synthetic vision, TAWS, dual AHRS and dual FMS, to name a few. Provided the FAA grants the airplane FAR Part 25 certification, the first Learjet 85 is scheduled to be delivered to Flexjet toward the end of 2013.