In its annual forecast, Honeywell estimated that 650 to 675 new business jets would be delivered to customers this year, a slight increase over the total for last year and an indication that the industry was continuing a slow recovery since sales plummeted after the peak year, 2008, when 1,139 business jets were delivered.
Back in the boom years, sales of business jets were spread over a wide range, from light and midsize planes to large-cabin, so-called heavy metal jets that can span the globe. In recent years, the market share for the smaller corporate jets dropped, while “the strong desire for larger-cabin aircraft with greater range and advanced avionics” has been dominant, said Brian Sill, the president for business and general aviation at Honeywell Aerospace.
After Gulfstream began delivering its top-of-the-line G650s in 2012, a three-year waiting list formed for orders, along with a robust resale market in which some buyers flipped their order positions at a profit. The G650, which can reach 92 percent of the speed of sound and can fly nonstop from New York to Hong Kong, costs about $65 million — but a buyer then needs to spend millions more to have the cabin outfitted.
In mid-October, Gulfstream announced that it was introducing two new large-cabin, long-range models — a $43.5 million G500 and a $54 million G600, which can carry up to 18 passengers each. The first G500 delivery is expected in 2018 and the first G600 delivery in 2019.
Read more: The New York Times