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Honda Aircraft delivers first Elite into Canada

Honda Aircraft has delivered the first HondaJet Elite to a Canadian customer, shortly after achieving approval from the nation's regulator for the upgraded variant.

The handover on 15 April to a private owner and first-time Honda Aircraft customer came five days after the light business jet received certification from Transport Canada. The aircraft has yet to appear on the registry of C-prefixed aircraft, however.

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Honda launched the Elite variant in May 2018 and the aircraft entered service three months later. It is the first major revamp to the HondaJet since the type entered service in December 2015.

Priced at $5.28 million, the aircraft has a host of new features, including an auxiliary fuel tank to boost range by 230nm (426km) to 1,440nm, a 45kg (100lb) increase in maximum take-off weight to 4,860kg and a quieter, revamped interior featuring a small galley and a lavatory with a belted seat that can accommodate a fifth passenger.

Cirium's Fleets Analyzer records a global in-service fleet of 118 HondaJets, of which 18 are the Elite version. The company says it has a "healthy order backlog" and plans to deliver between 40 and 50 aircraft this year.

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