The “Faster & Further” Gulfstream G650ER Receives FAA Certification

It’s been a busy couple of days over at Gulfstream recently. Earlier this week, the manufacturer unveiled plans for its new generation G500 and G600 twinjet aircraft, hot on the heels of last week’s FAA certification for the G650ER.

An extended range of its hugely successful G650, the G650ER’s certification means that Gulfstream can now deliver the upgraded aircraft to customers by the end of the year. And it will be available for charter in early 2015.

The new developments add 500 nm to the existing 7000 nm maximum flight range of the $65 million aircraft, by way of modifications to the fuel systems. This means it can now fly at a cruise speed of Mach 0.85 for a distance further than LA to Melbourne – in under 15 hours. Which is faster and further than any other long range jet in existence.

Gulfstream's G650ER is now certified for a range of 7500 nm

Existing G650 owners can also have their aircraft refitted with the new fuel system for $2 million, to increase their aircraft’s range – and those still in the queue for the G650 (which will still be on offer) can opt to switch to the G650ER instead.

It’s the latest development in the exciting blow-by-blow battle that’s currently taking place in the long range jet market. Long range jets are the industry’s biggest growth category and the race to fly further is making for fascinating spectator sport.

Since Gulfstream launched the original G650 in 2008, the aircraft – known as the G6 for short – has become the jet everyone’s talking about. In a period of economic instability, it became the most sought after private jet in years. Even resulting in buyers “flipping” their places in the order book queue for a profit – a trend not seen in the private jet industry since before the recession.

This didn’t go unnoticed by rival Bombardier, who in turn announced its own “fastest and further” contenders. The Canadian-based manufacturer currently offers the Global 6000 as its longest range jet, but is busy working on the Global 7000 and Global 8000, with first deliveries due in 2015 and 2016 respectively. The 8000 will then overtake the G650ER, offering a maximum range of 7900 nm.

Bombardier's Global 7000 & Global 8000 will set the bar further

Until the next development from Gulfstream that is. The newly-unveiled G500 and G600 (due for first deliveries in 2019) won’t fly any further, but they will fly faster – up to a cruise speed of Mach 0.9 – and promise to offer a “best in class” performance in terms of technology and efficiency.

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