Textron Aviation was only formed in 2014 but its acquisition of the Beechcraft and Hawker Aircraft businesses alongside the iconic Cessna name has seen it become one of the world’s leading private aircraft makers today.
Testament to this fact is the company’s latest celebration of reaching 1,000 deliveries of its Cessna Citation 560XL series aircraft. The model line is Textron Aviation’s bestselling offering and its 1,000th deal sees a Cessna Citation XLS+ calling the Northeastern US region home. The aircraft will be managed and operated by Custom Jet Charters, an FAA-certified Part 135 operator.
What makes the 560XL lineage special?
The 560XL jet family encompasses models such as the Cessna Citation Excel, Cessna Citation XLS and Cessna Citation XLS+. Their winning formula is reinforced through transcontinental range, enhanced cabin, cockpit technology and superior performance.
These features have evolved to become part of the 560XL family thanks to the shift in business aviation trends throughout the past 25 years. This has enabled the 560XL aircraft to amass over five million collective flight hours to showcase unprecedented levels of reliability.
Lannie O’Bannion, Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Flight Operations, explained the true significance of the aircraft.
"The 560XL series is known for propelling the landscape of business aviation forward, delivering speed, spaciousness and comfort to a new segment of the industry," he said.
"Its evolution and prominence continue to resonate with customers across the globe: Every two minutes, a 560XL jet takes off or lands somewhere in the world.
"This milestone delivery is a direct reflection of our customers’ trust and the dedication of our employees who continue to build and support the Citation 560XL family of aircraft."
Key pilot and passenger features
The crucial appointments of the Citation XLS+ model sees wide passenger seats while pilots can enjoy FADEC engine controls and Collins Pro Line 21 avionics with four LCD cockpit displays and the addition of graphical weather charts and maps for navigation through calmer skies.
Operators can also fly at speeds of up to 441 knots (817 kilometres per hour) with a maximum economy range of 2,100 nautical miles (3,889 kilometres). A take-off field length as short as 3,560 feet (1,085 metres) is also possible alongside a climb to 45,000 feet (13,716 metres) in 29 minutes.
Its high-elevation performance and steep approach capabilities mean the XLS+ can take off and land at airports with an elevation of up to 14,000 feet (4,267 metres).
Women of aviation pioneering the skies
In celebration of March being Women’s History Month, Textron Aviation shone the spotlight on some of the most influential female leaders who have helped shape the company into the success story that it is today.
Its latest highlight of the women in aviation movement includes Pili Barker, Manager of Special Missions Bids and Proposal, who shares her personal inspiration towards being an inclusive leader.