Video: First NBAA for Gulfstream G500, G600

Clean-sheet large cabin jet program updated.

Gulfstream president and CEO Larry Flynn today shared the by-now well-known news of the launch of two new clean-sheet airplanes, the G500 and G600. During Gulfstream's NBAA Convention press conference Flynn showed footage of the spectacular public launch at the company's headquarters in Savannah, Georgia, last week. That launch, by Flynn and General Dynamics CEO Phebe Novakovic, featured a laser light show, 3-D virtual reality video of the flight deck and cabin and capped off by the opening of a curtain and the surprise "unveiling" of the first G500, which taxied up under its own power.

Flynn said that the airplane was so quiet as it taxied into position that several people asked him "how they were powering the airplane." It was, of course, under its own power, a fact that Flynn said underscored just how little noise the new airplane's Pratt & Whitney Canada engines make.

Scott Neal, vice president of sales and marketing, talked about the speed of the airplanes, which he said would lead the industry. The G500 will fly 4,800 nm at Mach 0.85 and 3,800 nm at Mach 0.90. The G600 boasts a range of 6,200 nm at 0.85 and 4,800 at Mach 0.90. The conventional speed of "eight-oh," he said, "is no longer an acceptable number" to the company's customers.

The speed of the airplane is big selling point, clearly. Flynn told Flying at a pre-launch press briefing that a high percentage of its G650 operators are flying their airplanes at Mach .90 whenever they can. Flynn said he "absolutely" expects this trend to be the case with G500 and G600 operators when those airplanes come on line.

The G500 first delivery is anticipated in 2018, with the G600 following the next year. The G600 sells for $43.5 million and the G600 will sell for $54.5 million in 2014 dollars.

Look for our cover story on the G500 and G600 in the December issue of Flying.

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