Company Accepting Letters Of Intent For Supersonic Bizjet
Aerion tells ANN the
company recently began accepting Letters of Intent for a limited
number of early delivery positions on its planned supersonic
At the 2007 Dubai Air Show, the company also announced the
appointment of Zurich-headquartered ExecuJet Aviation Group as the
exclusive representative for all areas of the world outside the
Americas. On behalf of Aerion, ExecuJet is now offering 40 early
delivery positions to customers outside the Americas for an
aircraft priced at US$80 million in 2007 dollars.
The positions will be secured by refundable deposits of
$250,000. In the Americas, Aerion will accept letters of interest
"Market demand has driven our decision to begin accepting
deposits," said Brian Barents, Aerion vice chairman. "As confidence
in the Aerion program has grown, we have been approached by a
number of prospective customers wanting to secure positions. We
would be remiss to ignore their enthusiasm and interest."
ExecuJet was an ideal marketing partner, Barents adds, due to a
proven aircraft sales track record in strategic alliance with
leading business jet OEMs Bombardier and Grob Aerospace. The
company manages a fleet of more than 100 light- to large- and
ultra-long-range business jets, and support operations
strategically located across Europe, the Middle East, Australasia
"We have a keen interest in supersonic business jet transport,
and, more particularly, the Aerion jet," said Niall Olver, chief
executive officer of ExecuJet. "Aerion has hit the nail on the head
in terms of performance and technology. We’ve taken a close
look at this design, and have a good understanding of what global
business jet travelers want and will pay for. The Aerion jet takes
advantage of well-understood materials and technologies and uses
off-the-shelf engines. It will be a compelling sales proposition
and straightforward to support."
The Aerion supersonic business jet was formally unveiled in
October 2004, and is now in an "advanced stage of design,"
according to the company.
As ANN reported, Aerion is
seeking to recruit an aircraft manufacturer to serve as program
integrator. The company says it is in discussions with candidate
companies and anticipates an agreement within the first half of
2008. That would allow the Aerion supersonic jet to enter service
as soon as 2014.
The Aerion jet is designed to cruise at speeds up to 1.15 Mach
overland without producing a boom on the ground, and at speeds up
to 1.6 Mach in other areas. Over the continental US, where
regulations require speeds below Mach 1, the aircraft can cruise
efficiently just below the speed of sound, offering economies
comparable to today’s large business jets. The aircraft seats
eight to 12 passengers in stand-up comfort and has a range in
excess of 4,000 nautical miles.
"Our agreement with ExecuJet is indicative of this
project’s momentum. It will serve to further validate demand
for supersonic travel in general, and Aerion's approach in
particular," said Barents. "Indeed, ExecuJet’s endorsement is
a testament to the progress we have made in our efforts to
reintroduce supersonic flight to the civil market."