Flexjet today announced at the National Business Aviation Association’s Convention & Exposition (NBAA2015) that it has placed a firm order for 20 Aerion AS2 aircraft.
Flexjet is the first fleet provider of private travel to commit to purchasing the first supersonic business jet and in doing so will become the world’s first publicly available supersonic transport since commercial airline supersonic crossings ended service in 2003.
“Throughout its history, Flexjet has been on the leading edge of aviation technology, introducing the best in performance, convenience and high-end capabilities to our aircraft Owners. Today, we are proud to make the next great step in business jet travel and offer what will be the first commercial supersonic flights in a generation,” said Flexjet Chairman Kenn Ricci.
Flexjet will offer access to the new aircraft through its private aviation membership programme, Global Access.
The Aerion AS2 business jet will have a top speed of Mach 1.5, which is 67 percent faster than the top cruise speeds of current or anticipated long-range subsonic jets. Carrying eight to 12 passengers, the AS2 will have an intercontinental-capable range of 4,750 nautical miles at supersonic speed, saving three hours across the Atlantic versus subsonic aircraft and more than six hours on longer trans-Pacific routes. The three-engine jet, now under development by Aerion in collaboration with Airbus Group, is expected to make its first flight in 2021 and enter service in 2023.
Aerion and Flexjet will work together to design stunning, unique interiors for the AS2, continuing the tradition of premium interiors such as those in Flexjet’s recently launched Red Label fleet.
“The Aerion AS2 is a genuine game-changer for international travel, providing the world’s only commercially available supersonic transportation, enabling travelers to have breakfast with their family in New York, enjoy a business lunch in London and be back home to help their children with their homework,” said Michael Silvestro, Flexjet’s Chief Executive Officer. “The Aerion AS2, together with our Global Access international program, will accelerate our evolution towards becoming the world leader in providing long-range private jet travel.”