Aviation

New Learjet 75 Liberty will be assembled in Wichita, Bombardier announces

Bombardier’s newest business jet, Learjet 75 Liberty, will be assembled in Wichita, the company said Tuesday.

The Learjet 75 Liberty, a six-seat light jet, was announced Tuesday, “offering more light jet operators than ever before the opportunity to step up into the iconic platform that launched business aviation in America,” a news release from the company says.

“The Learjet 75 Liberty demonstrates our commitment to this iconic brand. This aircraft is a supreme vote of confidence in the Learjet product and our Wichita site, and paves the way for a busy future on the Learjet production line,” said Mark Masluch, director of public affairs for Bombardier.

He wouldn’t say how many jobs could be added in Wichita. The company had more than 1,000 employees in Wichita as of Tuesday, he said.

“Of course, we’ll evaluate the need to expand our workforce as this program progresses,” Masluch said.

Bombardier is restructuring its company after essentially dropping out of the commercial plane market last week. The Canada-based company sold its regional jet business to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries for $550 million.

The Learjet 75 Liberty will have a list price of $9.9 million, about $2 million less than the original Learjet 75, and fewer seats but more legroom, according to the plane’s specifications. It has a range of 2,080 nautical miles, meaning it can fly from Las Vegas to New York, Seattle to Washington, D.C., without stopping for gas.

The lower-priced jets could help boost Bombardier’s deliveries, which have been on a five-year decline. It delivered 12 Learjet 75s last year.

Bombardier will begin deliveries of the Learjet 75 Liberty in 2020, the release says.

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