Aviation

Textron touts Citation X Elite program

Textron Aviation garnered a lot of interest in its Citation X Elite program last month during the National Business Aviation Association convention in Orlando, where it displayed a refurbished Citation X, the company said.

“It was good exposure,” said Brad Thress, senior vice president of Textron Aviation’s customer service. “NBAA this year was so busy for all aspects of the business.”

Under the program, the company buys used Citation Xes, refurbishes them, gives them a system update and resells them.

“We’re really just looking for an opportunity to offer older Xes with a new lease on life with modern conveniences,” Thress said.

Current Citation X owners can upgrade their jets under the program as well.

The work takes four months to complete and is performed by Cessna’s Wichita service center.

On Tuesday, the company said it had entered an exclusive agreement with Connecticut-based Guardian Jet, to be its sales partner and market the Citation X Elite business jet.

Guardian has had global experience with the midsize jet market, the company said.

Under the program, the Citation Xes are given new exterior paint and a new interior, which includes new passenger and crew seats, upgraded Honeywell avionics, a new cabin management system and enhanced Internet and global voice service.

“It modernizes the interior completely,” Thress said.

The plane is updated with charts and moving maps, satellite weather radar, a laser gyro system that improves navigational accuracy, and a new flight management system, which gives pilots the ability to make more precise approaches using GPS signals.

It’s also equipped with what’s called ADS-B Out, which give the plane the ability to transmit its location to air traffic control. It’s part of a regulatory requirement by the Federal Aviation Administration as it modernizes the air traffic control system.

The cabin management system, supplied by Mid Continent Controls in Derby, centralizes control of the cabin’s lights, shades and temperature.

The package also comes with maintenance support for five years or 1,500 hours and includes parts and labor.

The Elite program began in 2013.

“It’s been very successful,” Thress said.

The Citation Xes in the program offered for sale were built from 1998 to 2000. They sell for $6.5 million, which includes the modernization package, Thress said.

Citation X owners can upgrade their planes at a cost of $3 million to $4 million, depending on the plane.

Some but not all of the Citation Xes purchased by Textron Aviation for the program have come from fractional ownership company NetJets.

Reach Molly McMillin at 316-269-6708 or mmcmillin@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @mmcmillin.

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