The New Aircraft Defining the Future of Private Aviation

Cessna Citation Ascend private jet Textron Aviation

Cessna Citation Ascend © Textron Aviation

From business jets to pleasure planes, these fresh models are all pioneers in their own rights.

The global private jet market is booming. Despite pushback from eco-campaigners, the industry continues to evolve and grow, with manufacturers consistently raising the bar on speed, performance and design. Following the 2024 edition of the industry’s premier business aviation event, EBACE, we look to the skies to reveal the most exciting launches shaping the future of on-demand flight.

Cessna Citation

A Cessna Citation aircraft takes off or lands every two minutes somewhere in the world, reveals Ron Draper, president and CEO of Textron Aviation, home to the Cessna brand. This staggering statistic makes the Citation lineup one of the most successful families of business jets—and Draper aims to boost that figure in the coming months.

Citation Longitude
Citation Longitude
Cessna Citation CJ3 Gen2

In recent years, Textron Aviation has invested in innovation, boosting its presence in the exciting light and midsize jet markets. In 2023, the US company revealed two new additions to the Citation dynasty, the Cessna Citation Ascend and the Cessna Citation CJ3 Gen2.

Expected to enter service in 2025, the Cessna Citation Ascend has a brand-new cockpit, improved performance and a luxurious cabin that aims to stand heads above competitors. “We asked customers what they wanted in the next evolution of this iconic aircraft, and we believe the Citation Ascend will deliver,” says Draper.

The sleek Citation Ascend is packed full of modern design features, and the cabin experience has been elevated with attention to detail given to every element, including the floor. Up to 12 passengers have more room and flexibility with swivel seats that are specially designed for improved posture and comfort. The aircraft also includes new cabin windows that are nearly 15 percent larger than previous designs.

Owners will have free rein over customisation of the interior—down to the firmness of the cushions. Among the high-tech features on offer is an advanced acoustic treatment system designed to inspire a sense of calm. The idea is that customers will be able to “ascend” and arrive focused and ready for their next engagement.

Cessna Citation CJ3 Gen2

The Cessna Citation CJ3 Gen2 is another pioneering aircraft that puts the passenger—and pilot—first. Set to raise the bar in the light-jet sector, the aircraft seats up to 10 in a spacious cabin that can be completely personalised to the owner’s tastes and needs—offerings include swivel seating, accent lighting, executive tables, and more. In an interesting touch, bathrooms are flooded with natural light from skylights.

There’s also a host of features and technologies to improve the pilot experience and redefine business aviation, inspired by feedback from customers and pilots, including Draper himself. “As a pilot of the CJ3 series, I appreciate the aircraft’s excellent range, payload and efficiency, along with new productivity and comfort features,” he says. “The Cessna Citation CJ3 Gen2 is our most comprehensive Gen2 product announcement yet, offering customers proven performance, leading-edge technology and an unmatched cabin experience.”

The announcements are “testament to our vision to be the leader in aviation, inspiring the journey of flight”, says Draper, who hints of more to come in the future.

Qatar Executive

The business-jet arm of Qatar Airways, Qatar Executive, is the go-to for discerning travellers looking to privatise their flying experience. It has recently upgraded its fleet, becoming the exclusive worldwide commercial operator of the new Gulfstream G700, an aircraft that is set to be a “game-changer” for the company and business aviation as a whole.

“We are delighted to welcome the first of our Gulfstream G700 aircraft to the Qatar Executive fleet,” says Qatar Airways Group GCEO Engr. Badr Mohammed Al Meer. “The industry’s highest performance long-range business aircraft will further enhance the product offering alongside the existing fleet of 15 Gulfstream G650ER aircraft.”

Qatar Executive’s Gulfstream G700

The ultimate jet for business and leisure, the aircraft has one of the most comfortable and versatile cabins in business aviation. As well as luxurious seating for up to 13 passengers, it comes with hotel-quality spaces including a bedroom, dining area, meeting areas and a spacious and comfortable lounge where passengers can watch movies and presentations or just relax. Combined with Qatar Executive’s exquisite service and highly trained staff, the aircraft is set to offer a private jet experience like no other.

The jet is also one of the safest and most efficient around, thanks to its advanced technologies, and is capable of flying long ranges at speed—indeed, the G700 is the fastest Gulfstream jet yet.

“The G700 truly represents the future of private air travel, offering a superior flying experience with unrivalled design, technology, comfort and style,” the airline adds. “With this aircraft as part of our growing fleet, Qatar Executive will be able to offer the non-stop reach of the industry’s highest performance ultra-long-range business aircraft, with its speed, efficiency, reliability, handling and performance.”

The new jet, which was successfully tested using Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), will enter service in June and join Qatar Executive’s fleet of G650ER aircraft. Keeping sustainability in mind as it enters this new era, the group aims to use SAF wherever possible in the new jets, improving the carbon footprint of the company and its passengers.

Piper Aircraft

Designed to be piloted, Piper Aircraft’s single-engine planes are the ultimate toy for aviation enthusiasts. Ideal for a romantic getaway or a spontaneous weekend flight, owner-pilots can enjoy the ultimate sense of freedom and travel from the coast to their countryside vineyard or chalet in the Alps in record speed.

Named “FURY” for a reason, Piper’s newest launch breaks barriers in terms of speed, power and performance. The M700 FURY sits in the Piper M-Class line and is officially the manufacturer’s fastest-ever single-engine aircraft, and can fly you from Nice to Geneva in 43 minutes, Paris in 1 hour 20 minutes, and London in 2 hours 4 minutes.

Piper M700 FURY

Fitted with a powerful turboprop engine achieving 700-shaft horsepower, the aircraft also features improvements to take-off and climb performances, beating previous models in time by around 30 percent.

“The M700 FURY is a beautifully efficient, cross-country thoroughbred that gives our customers a performance-based flight experience with economics never seen before,” said Piper president and CEO John Calcagno. “We listened, and we delivered. The M700 FURY encompasses power, performance and the most advanced safety measures available today, and an overall value proposition that is extremely compelling to individuals and corporate flight departments alike.”

The first example of the new generation of the M-Class family, the M700 FURY makes the most of the latest, sophisticated technologies available from experts such as Garmin, including an intuitive touch screen-controlled glass flight deck. Owners can also pick from six fresh interior schemes, featuring new leather options and considered seat designs.

Pilatus Aircraft

Not one to rest on its laurels, Pilatus Aircraft goes above and beyond with its new PC-24 jet. Promising “more range, more payload, and even more possibilities”, the bright cabin in its typical six-seat executive configuration offers ample space to relax and move around on the flat floor.

Pilatus Aircraft PC-24

This enhanced cabin also allows for the addition of new interior elements, including a large side-facing convertible divan which could be used as a sofa or a bed—a feature usually only found on much larger jets at a much higher price point.

Other enhancements include improvements to ambient sound levels, new storage solutions and a high-tech integrated cabin management system which includes extras such as high-quality speakers and mood lighting.

Pilatus Aircraft PC-24

The PC-24 is one of the most versatile aircraft of its kind; it operates on very short runways like La Mole in Saint-Tropez and on unpaved airfields like the Venice Lido or at Goodwood Aerodrome, a grass airfield.

“The PC-24 upgrade includes over 1,000 modifications throughout the aircraft,” says Pilatus CEO Markus Bucher. “Yet again, we went all the way to the limits of what is possible, making maximum use of our engineering capabilities to deliver the best PC-24 ever. With this major upgrade, there is simply no other business jet on the market capable of consistently performing like our Super Versatile Jet.”

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