Hawker Beechcraft launched the Premier II update to the single-pilot Premier I on May 19 on the eve of the EBACE show in Geneva. The Premier II climbs to altitude more quickly, flies farther and carries a greater load than the airplane it replaces.
“It’s been a long time anticipated by a lot of our customers,” said Brad Hatt, president for commercial aircraft. “It addresses the primary shortcoming of the Premier I, and that is range, and at the same time we enhance the performance of the airplane considerably.”
The upgrade of the Premier combines new engines, winglets and an increased max weight to deliver a 300-nm, 20-percent increase in range, a new maximum altitude of 45,000 feet and a 15-knot increase in maximum cruise speed to 465 knots.
The new 3,050-pound-thrust Williams International FJ44-3APs replace the Premier I/IA’s FJ44-2As, which each provide 2,300 pounds of thrust and have a 3,500-hour TBO. The 4,000-hour-TBO FJ44-3APs are fully fadec controlled, an upgrade from the -2A’s hydromechanical controls. The blended winglets are entirely new and designed by Hawker Beechcraft engineers, who also added larger splayed ventral fins to the aft lower fuselage, replacing the single smaller ventral fin on the Premier I. The ventral fins add lateral stability at low speeds.
The performance improvements are achieved without adding any fuel capacity to the Premier airframe, which retains the composite fuselage and empennage and metal wings. The Premier II maximum takeoff weight has been increased to 13,800 pounds, up from the Premier I’s 12,500 pounds. This required certification under commuter category regulations, but the Premier II remains a single-pilot airplane.
According to AINonline