NetJets has entered into a fleet agreement with Textron Aviation to purchase up to 175 Citation Longitude and up to 150 Citation Hemisphere aircraft. NetJets has operated a fleet of nearly 500 Cessna Citations since 1984, and this agreement could increase its roster to more than 800 aircraft over the next 10 to 15 years. The option to purchase the Hemisphere distinguishes NetJets as the launch customer for the clean-sheet model.
“As the worldwide leader in private aviation, we seek out products that raise the bar and deliver an exceptional travel experience to our owners and their passengers,” says chairman and CEO Adam Johnson. “As we anticipate placing these orders, we look back to the first order we placed for the Citation Latitude back in 2015. We have just placed an order for our 100th Latitude and, just as we did then, we take this fleet agreement seriously.
"We see the same revolutionary attributes of the Citation Latitude and Longitude in the Citation Hemisphere and are delighted to become its launch customer. The Hemisphere delivers long overdue innovation to the $30 to $40 million large-cabin aircraft category. We look forward to working with Textron Aviation to lead the industry and launch an aircraft that marks yet another new chapter.”
Textron's chairman, president and CEO Scott Donnelly adds: “We are proud to expand our relationship with NetJets once again through this significant milestone for the Citation Longitude and Citation Hemisphere. The Longitude fleet will build on the success NetJets has enjoyed with the Citation Latitude midsize jet. Through its class-leading performance, operating efficiency and the quietest cabin experience in its category, we believe the Longitude redefines the super midsize segment. The Hemisphere will follow with its revolutionary approach to performance and the large cabin experience.”
NetJets and Textron have collaborated for more than three decades. Beginning with the Citation SII, NetJets has owned and operated many Citation types including the Latitude, Sovereign, XLS/Excel and X. It has the option to take first deliveries of the Longitude in the second half of 2019, with additional options on Longitude aircraft exercised over the following 10 to 15 years.
The OEM and operator are designing a version of the Citation Hemisphere to meet the discerning standards of NetJets owners. They are also working with Safran to achieve performance characteristics that will enable the Hemisphere to reach far-off destinations with greater speed and reliability.
“We have worked steadfastly with Safran to understand the development stages of the Silvercrest engine,” says Textron senior VP of engineering Brad Thress. “Throughout our review, we have remained confident that Silvercrest is the best engine choice for the Hemisphere and are pleased to see Safran's enduring commitment to delivering it on time and on target.”
NetJets currently operates a fleet of 75 Citation Latitudes and expects to have 100 in service by mid-2019.