Manufacturing delays have pushed back certification of the Sino Swearingen SJ30-2 light business jet to "early 2000", says the company. Production of the wing and fuselage for the first certification-test aircraft is behind schedule at Gamesa, in Spain, and the first flight has been delayed to the second quarter of 1999.

San Antonio, Texas-based Sino Swearingen had hoped to certificate the SJ30 by the end of next year, but is "a little behind", admits president Jack Braly, explaining: "There are no technical problems, just parts and assembly delays." A 1,400h certification flight test programme is planned, he says, involving three aircraft.

The company, which has 135 firm orders for the SJ30, does not believe the additional delay will result in cancellations, as the orders have been placed by distributors and are secured by non-refundable deposits. Sino Swearingen has raised the price of the SJ30 to $4.2 million to reflect the previously announced gross-weight increase to 6,000kg (13,200lb) and the recent decision to install Honeywell Primus Epic avionics.

Source: Flight International