Cessna Aircraft Company, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced it received an order for three Citation Sovereigns from the China Flight Inspection Center (CFIC) of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).
"The Citation Sovereign was chosen for its reliability, its wide operating envelope with a maximum true airspeed of Mach 0.80 and its unmatched low speed handling characteristics, which are important for flight inspection missions," said Roger Whyte, Cessna´s senior vice president, Sales and Marketing.
"These three new Sovereigns will be a logical complement to CFICs existing fleet of eight Citations," Whyte said.
"The CFIC use their Citations as flight inspection aircraft for the airways calibration of all the airports in the Peoples´ Republic of China including Hong Kong and Macau and airports up to 15,000 feet in elevation. The Sovereign will join the Citation XLS and XLS+ as the only business jets in their class certified to operate from airports at altitudes as high as 15,000 feet," said Whyte.
Cessna expects to receive CAAC type design validation by the end of 2009. The three Sovereigns are scheduled for delivery to CFIC in late 2010, at which time they will undergo modifications to support the airways inspection mission. There are currently more than 20 Citations operating in China.
Since the first delivery in late 2004, more than 250 Citation Sovereigns have been delivered. Certified for operations to 47,000 feet (14,326 meters), the Sovereign can take off from airfields as short as 3,640 feet (1,109 meters) and has a maximum range of 2,847 nautical miles (5,272 kilometers) and a maximum cruise speed of 458 knots true airspeed/527 miles per hour (848 kilometers per hour).