When you think about marquee brands, you think Cadillac and Mercedes for luxury cars, Learjet for private jets. The latest and most advanced iteration of the classic line, which has been producing their iconic line of aircraft since 1964 when the six-passenger Model 23 went into production.
Is the Learjet Family Still Valid?
Does the street credibility of the Learjet family of aircraft still hold water? By this I mean is the brand hype from years of past glory still an accurate benchmark of the quality of the aircraft, or is Learjet a relic from a bygone era?
The Learjet 70 is, by all standards, a very modern design. It does still maintain the sleak, narrow lines which made the brand so easily identifiable; their calling card if you will. But the manufacturing processes of the design are modern, with tip tanks being replaced by winglets, as more efficient engines have reduced the necessary fuel on board.
Let’s take a look at how the Lear 70 stacks up to some comparable competitors:
Overall, the Lear 70 is comparable to most of its competitors. Fuel usage cost is a little over 19% more than most small jets, but maintenance is over 32% less on the Lear 70 than most small jets. That being said, crew cost and crew training are considerably higher than average, with insurance also being higher. It does boast slightly longer range than the Citation CJ3, and considerably better duration than the Phenom 300.
The Lear 70 cruises 11% faster than the CJ3, and has an tremendous ceiling of FL510, allowing operators to climb into the smoothest air and optimize fuel efficiency.
Lears made their mark with exceptional speed and high-level cruise. However, it has been often at the cost of fuel efficiency. But if covering a lot of ground fast is your bottom line, Learjets do it as well as anyone in the small jet market.