Honda Aircraft says its first Federal Aviation Administration-conforming HondaJet light business jet achieved a maximum speed of 425kt (790km/h) at 30,000ft (9,150m) and Mach 0.72 above 30,000ft on 11 March, "surpassing the company's performance commitment of 420kt for the production HondaJet".

Honda Aircraft president Michimasa Fujino says: "We are extremely pleased with the strong performance of the HondaJet early in the flight-test programme. Our flight tests indicate the aircraft is handling and performing as expected, with excellent control harmony and stability."

 © Hondajet

Five FAA-conforming aircraft will be involved in the certification programme. A second HondaJet has undergone structural testing. Mating of the third aircraft is complete and systems installation "is well under way", says Honda. "A fourth conforming flight-test aircraft is in the final stages of mating of major assemblies and a fifth conforming aircraft also is scheduled to support additional structural testing."

Work on the 24,470m2 (263,400ft2) HondaJet production facility is near completion at the company's Greensboro, North Carolina site. Honda has secured around 100 orders for the $4.5 million, eight-seat, GE Honda HF120-powered twinjet, which is earmarked for delivery in the third quarter of 2012.

Source: Flight International