Bombardier Learjet 40 earns U.S. FAA certification

New premium light jet on schedule to enter service in early 2004

Bombardier Aerospace has marked the 40-year anniversary of the first flight of a Learjet* aircraft by winning regulatory approval for the latest addition to its Bombardier Learjet family, appropriately designated the Bombardier Learjet 40.

The aircraft, a derivative of the pioneering Learjet 45 super light jet, was awarded certification by the FAA on Friday, July 11, 2003, less than 11 months after the first flight of a Learjet 40 on August 30, 2002.

“The Bombardier Learjet 40 bears the distinctive profile of the Learjet family and it’s fitting that it has been certified and will enter service some 40 years after the first Learjet flew,” said Peter Edwards, president, Bombardier Business Aircraft. “Just like its legendary predecessor the Learjet 31A, the Learjet 40 is now poised to take its place as today’s premium light business jet.”

The Learjet 40 outperforms its competitors in most significant categories. It offers fast cruise speeds, high altitude capabilities, superior payload/range, complete loading flexibility, among the largest cabin heights, widths and volumes, more technologically advanced avionics and systems, and the highest certification level in its class.

“This aircraft continues our tradition in superior light jets and the superior performance, speed and flexibility it offers customers certainly makes the Learjet 40 an exciting addition to our product line,” he added. “It is simply one of the best light jets ever produced – and customers will begin experiencing these benefits early next year when the Learjet 40 enters service as scheduled.”

The Learjet 40 will enter corporate service in the first quarter of 2004, with both traditional operators and also with Bombardier’s Flexjet* fractional ownership program, based in Dallas, Tex.

Premium Pedigree

The FAA granted certification to the same high level standards as the Learjet 45 – 14 CFR Part 25, Amendments 1 to 77 – following a flight and ground test program conducted in cooperation with the FAA. The program involved two flight test aircraft and several static test articles.

“Development and certification proceeded very smoothly, allowing it to be the quickest Learjet to market since that first Learjet 23,” observed John Holding, executive vice-president, engineering and product development, Bombardier Aerospace. “There were no surprises, no major issues and the authorities are clearly pleased with the aircraft. JAA certification is expected in the first quarter of 2004.”

Based on the proven Learjet 45 platform, of which there are currently some 225 jets in daily service worldwide, the Learjet 40 shares all major systems and benefits making it among the most technologically advanced aircraft in its class.

The Learjet 40 is capable of operating at cruise speeds up to Mach 0.81 (534 mph; 859 km/hr), it has a maximum range of 1,857 nautical miles (3,439 km) with four passengers, two crew and IFR reserves. It can operate at altitudes of up to 51,000 feet (15,545 m). With full fuel it can also carry a full load of seven passengers with payload to spare, making it a leader in its class in terms of payload-range.

The Bombardier Learjet 40 provides a 17-foot, 8-inch (5.40 m) cabin, with an oval cross-section of four-feet, 11-inches high by five feet, one inch wide (1.5-m x 1.6-m) resulting in a total cabin volume of 363 cubic feet (10.28 cm) – at least 20 per cent larger than its competitors. The typical configuration sports a forward club seating arrangement and a flat floor that translates into outstanding seated comfort for up to seven passengers.

Bombardier Aerospace, a unit of Bombardier Inc., is a world leader in the design and manufacture of innovative aviation products and provides services for the regional, business and amphibious aircraft markets. It also offers Bombardier Flexjet and Bombardier Skyjet* business aircraft programs, technical services, and aircraft maintenance and pilot training for business, regional airline and military customers.

Bombardier Inc., a diversified manufacturing and services company, is a world-leading manufacturer of business jets, regional aircraft, rail transportation equipment and motorized recreational products. It also provides financial services and asset management in business areas aligned with its core expertise. Headquartered in Montréal, Canada, the Corporation has a workforce of some 75,000 people and manufacturing facilities in 25 countries throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Its revenues for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2003 stood at $23.7 billion Cdn. Bombardier shares are traded on the Toronto, Brussels and Frankfurt stock exchanges (BBD, BOM and BBDd.F).

* Trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.

Dave Franson
Bombardier Aerospace
Wichita: (316) 946-3085