Hawker 400XPR jets undergoing upgrades

The first jets undergoing upgrades in Beechcraft’s Hawker 400XPR upgrade program are nearing final modifications, the company reports.

Beechcraft offers an upgrade program for Hawker 400XPR light business jets that includes winglets, new engines and upgrades to the plane’s exterior, cabin and cockpit.

The first customer for the program had a Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics system installed last year. It has re-entered service but recently returned for more modifications, including the installation of winglets and Williams International engines.

The second plane is receiving new engines, winglets and a Wi-Fi Internet and voice package. And the third plane is receiving new engines, winglets, paint and interior.

Deliveries of the three planes are expected in the first half of the year, the company said.

The upgrade program is designed to improve performance, operating costs and resale value, the company said.

“With the difficult market conditions for buying new light and midsize jets, we are seeing strong demand for our XPR programs,” Brian Howell, Beechcraft vice president of aftermarket sales and business development, said in a statement.

More than 1,600 of the jets are in operation.

“We are confident that our XPR programs will grow and continue to perform well,” Howell said.

Each component of the upgrade program is undergoing separate certification. Certifications for the winglets and Williams engines are pending; the Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics system upgrade is certified, and certification on the Garmin G5000 avionics modification is expected in 2015.

The modifications are being made at Hawker Beechcraft service centers.