Dassault Falcon is making its mark in the Middle East with the delivery of the fourth 7X to Saudia Private Aviation, an event that makes the Saudi Arabian firm the biggest operator of the type worldwide.

The French manufacturer's flagship trijet represents around 40% of the 60 Falcons in service in the Middle East, with 12 further aircraft to be delivered in the next two years. Gilles Gautier, vice president for sales and marketing, says that although it is a top-of-the-range aircraft, customers in the region appreciate that the 7X is "capable of any mission", given its performance and short take-off and landing capability. All three Falcon types are able to operate at London City, a key airport for many clients, he says.

"Fuel economy is becoming more important today than in the past and Falcons are greener than their competition," he says. "Everyone is thinking more rationally about these sorts of things today than in the past."

Dassault exhibited two 7Xs at the show: the latest Saudia aircraft and one belonging to an Omani operator.

Source: Flight International