Bombardier is to plug the gap between the Learjet 60XR and the Challenger 300 with an all new Learjet, currently codenamed NXT. It will be the first Learjet to have a stand-up cabin.

Bombardier says it is on track for a public unveiling in October 2008. President and COO Pierre Beaudoin says the unveiling will be “in time to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the first flight of a Learjet aircraft”.

The 8-passenger Learjet NXT will offer a targeted high-speed cruise of Mach 0.82 , plus a target range of up to 3,000nm. And it is designed to provide a larger, more comfortable cabin than any existing mid-sized aircraft. Bob Horner, vice president, international sales, says: “The NXT is certainly an encouraging prospect for the Middle East.”

Bob Horner

Pierre Gabriel Côté, president, Bombardier Business Aircraft, says: “The design is customer-driven, based on what they have told us they want in a new mid-size category business jet. To date, initial market interest in this next generation offering is strong, as we have received in excess of 65 letters of intent for this aircraft, which we expect to convert successfully into firm orders over the coming months.”

Learjet has released details of the cabin size. It will have a volume of 19.11m3 (675ft3) in volume and a 1.8m (5ft 11in) stand-up cabin. Compared to the current top-of-the-range Learjet the NXT offers an extra 2.235m (7ft 4in) bringing the length to 7.67m (25ft 2in) and an extra 100mm (4in) of width at 1.85m (6ft 1in).

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Source: Flight Daily News