Dassault Aviation SA (EPA:AM), maker of the Rafale combat plane, has unveiled its roomiest and most advanced business jet: the $45 million Falcon 5X, a plane designed to compete against long-range offerings from Gulfstream Aerospace and Bombardier Inc. (TSE:BBD.B). The big reveal to a prime target audience took place Tuesday at the National Business Association annual convention in Las Vegas.
Powered by new-generation Silvercrest engines from French plane and rocket engine manufacturer Safran SA (EPA:SAF), the 5X can fly up to 5,200 nautical miles nonstop, long enough to bring jet-setting execs from Los Angeles to London or Beijing to Paris. The jet has the best cabin height – six and a half feet at its tallest point – which means more freedom of movement. The plane has the usual amenities for this segment – lounge seats and couches – as well as an unexpected one: a skylight.
The 84-year-old aircraft manufacturer says this 16-passenger executive flier has the latest high-tech controls, including a multi-featured heads up display provided by Haifa, Israel-based Elbit Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ:ESLT) that assist in pilots’ situational awareness. The plane's all-digital cockpit controls were provided by Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE:HON) of Morristown, N.J.
Dassault says the maiden flight for the Falcon 5X will take place in the first quarter of next year.