- 28 Feb 2018
- Mike Chase
- Jets Comparison
Cessna Aircraft Company has been part of Textron Aviation since 2014, but started delivering business jets in 1971 (with the Citation I). It has since produced over 7,500 private jets across more than 25 different Citation models, primarily for the Entry-Level Jets, Light Jets and Mid-Size Jets.
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A Cessna Citation business jet costs between $4.5m for a new Citation M2 and $21.0m for a new Citation Longitude, according to Aircraft BlueBook’s winter 2020 data. However, depending on the age and condition of an aircraft, buyers can purchase a used Cessna Citation airplane for less. For example, Aircraft Bluebook’s winter 2020 data shows that a 2016 model Citation Latitude retails for approximately $10.5m, while a 2016 model Cessna Citation CJ4 costs $6.2m. Older, out of production model can be purchased for as little as $150k in the case of a 1973-model Citation 500.
In November 2020 there were 7,312 Cessna Citation jets flying worldwide, according to JETNET. The Citation II has the largest in-operation fleet, with 495 still flying out of 607 produced. At the time of writing, there had been 531 retirements across the Cessna Citation fleet from a total 7,843 units produced.
Cessna Citation private jets offer maximum ranges between 1,070nm for the Citation Mustang up to 3,500nm for the Citation Longitude, according to Textron Aviation, based on four passengers and available fuel aboard.
Several private jets compete with Cessna’s many jet models. Embraer’s Phenom 100 competes with the Citation Mustang in the Entry-Level Jet arena. In the Light Jet category, models from Beechcraft, Bombardier Learjet, Embraer (Phenom 100), Hawker and Pilatus’ PC-24 compete with different Citation models. In the Mid-Size class, models from Bombardier Learjet and Challenger (300/350 model), Dassault, Embraer, Hawker and Gulfstream all compete with specific Citation models.
Cessna Citation Jets Overview
By Gerrard Cowan
The Cessna Citation family of business jets marked its 50th anniversary in 2019. Over the decades, the company has taken a leading role in building Entry-Level Jets, Light Jets and Mid-Size Jets.
Cessna Citation Light Jet Models
The first Cessna Citation model – the Fanjet 500, later renamed the Citation 500 - made its inaugural flight in September 1969, and provided a jet capable of holding up to eight passengers. As time went on, so the aircraft evolved, with its engine nacelles being repositioned, the addition of a larger tail, and more.
An improved version of the aircraft entered the market in 1976 as the Cessna Citation I Light Jet, with a longer wingspan and increased payload. Some Citation Is were certified for single pilot operation and were named the Citation ISP.
The Cessna Citation II (certified in 1978) boosted passenger capacity to 10 with a longer fuselage, and it has greater range than the Citation I at just under 2,000nm. As with the Citation ISP model, a Citation IISP single pilot version was produced.
An improved Cessna Citation S/II Light Jet made its first test flight in 1984, and offered superior fuel capacity and a better version of the Pratt & Whitney JT15D-4B engines, among other advances. The final upgrade to the Citation II series came with the Cessna Citation Bravo, which brought advances including Honeywell Primus avionics and PW530A engines.
In 1988 Cessna further strengthened its position in the Light Jet market with the launch of the Cessna Citation V, a stretched version of the Cessna Citation II aircraft. The new aircraft offered more powerful JT15D-5A turbofans and a slight fuselage stretch. Seating seven passengers, the Citation V was later upgraded, first through the Citation Ultra, and then the Citation Encore and Citation Encore+.
The Cessna CitationJet was certified in 1992, designed to lower the bar into business jet ownership. The model was then upgraded and modified several times, generating a wide range of Light Jets. Each subsequent model included a slight stretch to the fuselage and upgraded engines for increased performance.
Among the CitationJet family are the Citation CJ1 and Citation CJ1+; Citation CJ2 and Citation CJ2+; Citation CJ3 and Citation CJ3+; and Citation CJ4. Currently, the Citation CJ3+ and CJ4 remain in production, while the CJ1+ was replaced with the Citation M2 in 2013, offering state-of-the-art avionics and powerplants.
Cessna Citation Entry-Level Jets
Taking the entry point into bizjet ownership even lower, when the Entry-Level Jet revolution took place at the start of the 21st century Cessna’s Citation Mustang was one of the first to be certified in the category. Between 2006 and 2017, the company delivered nearly 500 units of its smallest 4-5-seat, Pratt & Whitney PW615F-powered jet.
Cessna Citation Mid-Size Jets
Naturally as Cessna’s product line expanded over the decades, the company started developing and producing Mid-Size Jets. In 1982, the Cessna Citation III was certified, seating up to eight passengers and offering a range of 2,348nm.
Though plans for a larger, even longer-range variant – the Cessna Citation IV – were cancelled, the company went on to build the Cessna Citation VI, and then the upgraded Cessna Citation VII aircraft, which featured improved engines.
The 3,200nm-range Citation Sovereign, certified in 2004, was introduced for the same market niche as the Citation III/VI/VII platforms, and holds up to 12 passengers. The upgraded Cessna Citation Sovereign+, meanwhile, has range-enhancing winglets and Pratt & Whitney PW306D engines.
Other Mid-Size Jets from Cessna include the 3,125nm-range, Mach 0.90, Super Mid-Size Cessna Citation X, with its unique wing design and AE3007C1 engines. Models delivered after 2001 enjoy extra thrust, greater MTOW and improved Honeywell avionics over older units. Cessna upgraded the model to the Citation X+ which entered the market in 2012 with a stretched cabin and other upgrades.
The fairly recent Cessna Citation Latitude has a maximum range of 2,870nm and seats up to nine. The platform has been a market hit over the past five years, and offers sophisticated Garmin G5000 avionics, a 6ft stand-up cabin, and more.
And finally, the Citation Longitude Super Mid-Size jet is Cessna’s largest to date, offering a range of 3,500nm. It features Garmin G5000 avionics, Honeywell HTF7700L engines, and a cabin altitude of 5,950ft, and is pitched at the transatlantic jet market.
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