Cessna Citation X Closer to Reclaiming Speed Crown

Cessna concludes high-speed flight test program.

The odds of Cessna reclaiming its spot as the maker of the fastest civilian airplane just grew stronger. While Gulfstream one-upped the Wichita-based company when its Mach 0.925 G650 business jet was brought to market last year, Cessna announced last week that it has proven the promised performance capabilities of the Citation X speedster to the FAA.

Cessna concluded the high-speed flight-testing with the FAA, inching ahead of the G650 by showing speeds of up to Mach 0.935. The high-speed test program appears to have been a great success all around. “All responses from the high-speed certification testing were well within the expected performance envelope,” said Michael Thacker, Cessna’s senior vice president of engineering. “While these are the results our engineers fully anticipated, this final round of testing went so smoothly the conditions were completed in fewer flights and hours than planned.” More than 1,300 hours have been flown as part of the Citation X certification program so far.

In addition to having bragging rights for owning the fastest business jet in the world, Citation X owners will enjoy Garmin’s latest avionics offering for larger bizjets, a four-display G5000 panel, as well as new fadec-controlled Rolls-Royce engines. Another new addition is standard winglets, which have been offered as an aftermarket Winglet Technology STC through Cessna’s service centers since 2009.

Cessna hopes to achieve certification for the new Citation X early next year.

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