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Despite the seemingly weak global economic outlook, the demand for ultra long-range jets isn’t slowing down. Ultra long-range jets provide tremendous convenience to busy executives with their capabilities to cover long distances — nearly halfway round the world, non-stop — reaching incredible speeds of 1000km/h, the fastest in civil aviation. Capable of flying at higher altitudes, these jets can use the less busy flight levels and avoid turbulence zones, delivering smoother rides.
Easily covering over 12 hours of flying time each time, the jets, when not used for pleasure, are often office extensions where top executives can work in comfort to ensure that businesses carry on as per usual, even when they’re not on the ground.
Here are the top three ultra long-range jets.
1. Falcon 8X
French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation’s new flagship, the Falcon 8X offers the greatest range of any Falcon with its capability of flying for 7,500nm (13,890km), allowing it to fly from Singapore to London non-stop.
Compared to its predecessor, the Falcon 7X, it has the longest cabin (excluding cockpit and storage) measuring 13m, and can carry up to 16 passengers. Prices start from US$58 million (S$80 million), and with it comes the ability to accommodate more than 30 different cabin layout configurations, including a three-lounge cabin with a lavatory and shower.
Its three engines not only allow takeoffs from shorter runways, allowing you to land at more airstrips, but also shorten the time taken on transoceanic routes. With wing design improvements and new jet engines from Pratt and Whitney Canada, the Falcon 8X is up to 35 per cent more fuel-efficient.
2. Global 8000
The Bombardier Global 8000 is currently the world’s farthest-reaching business jet, flying at a range of 7,900nm (14,631km), which translated to non-stop flights from Los Angeles to Shanghai. Powered by the next-generation GE Passport 20 thrust engine, the aircraft will see superb efficiency with eight per cent less fuel burn and lower carbon emissions.
The aircraft can reach altitudes of up to 51,000ft and fly at a maximum cruise speed of 0.925 Mach (982km/h).
Featuring a three-zone cabin, which can be fully configured, the Bombardier Global 8000 can carry up to four crew members and 13 passengers.
The list wouldn’t be complete without Gulfstream’s latest flagship, the G650ER. Capable of flying 7,500 nm (13,890km), it cruises comfortably at an altitude of 45,000ft (13,716m) while maintaining a pressurised altitude of 4,060ft (1,237m), translating to passengers feeling fresher and less jet lagged even as they fly from Sydney to Dallas, or Dubai to Atlanta.
As an extended range for the luxurious G650, the fuel capacity is increased with a modification to the fuel system, housed in an existing space inside the G650’s wings at an additional US$2 million (S$2.69 million).
Featuring one of the roomiest cabins in business aviation, the passenger area can be configured 12 ways, offering a stateroom, conference space, and resting zones. Depending on needs, it can comfortably sleep 10, or carry up to 19 passengers.