Chinese inspector orders eight Cessna Citation XLS+
Textron Aviation’s joint venture in China, called Cessna-AVIC Aircraft (Zhuhai) Co., signed agreements with the Flight Inspection Center of CAAC (CFIC) for eight new Cessna Citation XLS+ business jets. Deliveries of the aircraft are expected to take place from 2019 to 2021.
“This recent order by the CFIC demonstrates the centre’s continued confidence in the products and services provided by Textron Aviation,” said Kevin Wu, international vice president of sales, Greater China and Mongolia. “We continue to fully support the operations of the CFIC and its mission to propel the development of the civil aviation safety system in China.”
Textron explains the eight XLS+ aircraft, which are to be outfitted with special flight inspection equipment, will facilitate the expansion of the CFIC fleet and its ability to respond to challenging missions throughout the region, such as fulfilling inspection and certification missions for the communication, navigation, radar and flight programs of newly built airports, as well as to perform regular flight inspection missions for airports already in operation. The company explains this investment will help provide a smooth implementation of airport construction plans and safe operation of corresponding air routes during China’s Thirteenth Five-Year Plan period.
According to the Thirteenth Five-Year Plan for the Development of China Civil Aviation, jointly issued by CAAC, National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Transport, China will complete work on 30 airports, commence work on 44 new airports, reconstruct and expand 139 airports, relocate 19 airports and conduct 51 additional projects to accelerate the construction of airports and lay the foundation for sustainable development of civil aviation.
Textron continues to explain the Thirteenth Five-Year Plan promotes the construction of more than 200 general aviation airports and encourages qualified civilian airports to concurrently provide general aviation services.
“The successful purchase of these aircraft is only possible with the great support for flight inspection operations from the Party Group of Civil Aviation Administration of China, which is significant to the fleet construction of CFIC and ensuring civil aviation transportation safety,” said Xiong Jie, director of CFIC.
CIFC’s existing fleet of eight 560 XLS/XLS+ jets continue to perform inspection missions at what Textron describes as high-elevation airports throughout the region. The XLS+ is well suited for this mission, according to the plane makers, due to its high-elevation performance, ability to operate in severe weather and harsh environments, and economical operating costs.
The Citation XLS+ is rated for speeds of up to 441 knots (817 kilometers/ hour) with a maximum economy range of 2,100 nautical miles (3,889 kilometres), a takeoff roll distance as short as 3,560 feet (1,085 metres) and a climb rate that equates to 45,000 feet (13,716 metres) in 29 minutes. The Citation XLS+ can take off and land at airports with an elevation of up to 15,000 feet (4,572 metres) and meets the standards of ILS CAT II.