Two New Cessna Aircraft, Citation Latitude and Citation M2, reach program milestones

Two new Cessna business aircraft, the Citation Latitiude and Citation M2, positioned at the each end of the airframer’s six-strong light jet family have reached major ­production and certification milestones. Cessna is hoping these two products will help to re-energine this embattled sector.

New Cessna Aircraft, Citation Latitude and Citation M2, reach programme milestones

The superlight, 2,500nm (4,625km) range Citation Latitude is advancing towards certification and service entry as Cessna begins full assembly-line flow at its manufacturing headquarters. Assembly of the clean-sheet business jet includes several technological advancements, according to Cessna, such as the use of new automated robotics and ergonomically-friendly tooling stations.

“We are bringing ­technological advances to both the design of our new products and the way we manufacture them,” says Scott ­Ernest, chief executive of parent company Textron ­Aviation.

The fourth flight-test Latitude will be the first aircraft to roll off the production line. Two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW306D ­Latitudes – a prototype and a production example – have logged 230h in over 100 flights.

The third aircraft is scheduled to join the flight-test fleet before the end of the third quarter. US certification for the Garmin G5000-equipped Latitude remains on track for the first half of 2015. According to Flightglobal’s ­Ascend Fleets ­database, Cessna has a backlog for 27 Latitudes.

Meanwhile, six months after it entered service in the USA, the 1,580nm-range Citation M2 has clinched European approval, paving the way for deliveries to begin to European customers.

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