Dassault reports delay on 5X, progress on 8X

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At this week’s Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (BACE 17) organized by the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) in Las Vegas, NV, French OEM Dassault has reported another delay in the development of its Falcon 5X tri-jet, while sales of its flagship, the Falcon 8X, are progressing well.

According to a company statement, with recent deliveries to China and Russia, the Falcon 8X is now in service in all major markets around the world. Introduced to the bizav market just a year ago, the 6,450 nm flagship has been delivered to 14 countries, including four in Brazil. The aircraft is operating in Europe, the US, South America, the Middle East and now also in Asia and Russia. Russia and Brazil have been long-time popular regions for Falcon operators – especially regarding the company’s former flagship, the Falcon 7X.

Also read: Falcon 5X has lift-off

The company’s latest addition, however, is facing more trouble than expected. Although the Falcon 5X succesfully performed its maiden flight in the beginning of July from the OEM’s headquarteres at Bordeaux-Merignac in France, the aircraft’s Snecma Silvercrest engine has encountered delays since 2015. The first flight was also performed with preliminary “non-production” versions of the engines. A potential new problem has since then emerged, pushing the aircraft’s entry-into-service back to 2020. At a press conference earlier this week, Dassault Aviation Chairman & CEO Eric Trappier referred to the engine problem as “a serious one.”

Additionally, Trappier revealed no more than the bare minimum on the company’s new business jet program, which was announced in May of this year. “We want to be in a position to launch a new Falcon jet at the end of 2017,” Trappier confirmed. “Preliminary studies are focusing on enhanced comfort and a reduced environmental footprint, mainly by reducing fuel consumption and noise. That’s all I can say for now.”

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