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HondaJet review 2017

As Honda’s inaugural aircraft, the HondaJet represents their first effort in the aerospace industry and has been in development for 40 years in order to make the ultimate first impression. This uniquely long development period has culminated in a strong launch product. Here we look into the innovations which separate the HondaJet from the competition.

Honda private jet’s past and present

As detailed in our 2015 blog post on the HondaJet, everything about this aircraft is over-engineered, exactly as Honda Aircraft Company intended. If you would like to experience the HondaJet first-hand, Air Charter Service provides a range of private jet charter services.

Honda first started working in the aerospace business in 1986, when the company decided to branch out from cars and begin researching and developing an air-bound Honda. The aircraft was developed by the Honda Aircraft Company which is headquartered in Greensboro, North Carolina and owned by Japanese multinational conglomerate Honda, whose vast resources facilitated the exhaustive design process. Over the following four decades, which Honda dedicated to the innovative design of their first product, the HA-420 HondaJet emerged.

After the design phase, a factory for manufacturing the aircraft was completed in 2011. A total of 40 planes were built in 2015, followed by 60 more in each consecutive year; this is planned to rise up to 80 per year by 2019. The first jet was sold on December 23, 2015, and the HondaJet received its certifications for aviation safety between 2015 and 2017. On August 16, 2017, the HondaJet was announced as the most-delivered jet in its class, showing just how popular it is to this day.

The technology behind the HondaJet

Red and gray HondaJets flying in formation, surrounded by clouds
Red and gray HondaJets flying in formation, surrounded by clouds

Over 20 years of research alone went into the HondaJet’s over-the-wing engine mounting design, which allowed for a larger cabin, reduced noise (through isolation of the engines), and increased fuel efficiency compared with traditional competing solutions.

The HondaJet’s wing and fuselage also underwent significant research and development, utilizing a cutting-edge technology called Natural Laminar Flow (NLF) which reduces drag as well as enabling greater fuel efficiency and a higher cruise speed. Instead of aluminum, a lighter honeycomb-structured composite material was developed that allowed for a thinner fuselage and therefore more cabin space, higher performance and lower fuel consumption.

With an external size of 42.62 x 39.76 x 14.90 ft (length x wingspan x height), the HondaJet is a similar size to its competitors, but uses its internal space much more effectively to provide a larger cabin area. Cargo space is easily accessible through the nose and aft, with 66 cubic feet of luggage space. The hull is available in a selection of colors for greater personalization.

HondaJet’s range and speed

Through the exterior innovations, the HondaJet achieves a maximum cruise speed of 485.6 mph, 20.7 mph faster than the closest competition in the light-jet weight class. To give an idea of just how fast this aircraft is, the HondaJet broke two in-class speed records in 2016. Despite its small size, the HondaJet’s range is substantial at 1,407.4 miles. Its unique engine design allows for the quietest noise levels (EPNdB) during flyover of any business airplane available in its weight class and its cruise altitude reaches a cloud-topping maximum of 43,000 ft – 2,000 ft above the competition.

In terms of fuel, the HondaJet’s range has the best of both worlds, utilizing its efficiency to both retain its long travel distance and consume significantly less fuel; under half the block fuel of competing solutions. Alongside cheaper flights with less required fuel, the jet is also much better for the environment, producing less nitrogen dioxide than other light-jets.

HondaJet interior

Moving on to the HondaJet interior; cabin space is a key design priority for Honda, and as such this aircraft provides more room for passengers than any other light-jet. Designed to offer more than just a comfortable ride, the HondaJet’s cabin provides a quiet space ideal for many situations: work (thanks to a large, slide-out table), group conversation or quiet relaxation. Engine placement displaces noise away from the cabin to create a peaceful environment.

Built to comfortably seat up to five passengers through an optional fifth chair, the HondaJet interior provides best-in-class legroom with slide, shift and lock capability. The lavatory occupies a fully enclosed private area and comes with a stylish cobalt-blue washbasin. For the most futureproof in-flight control system, passengers can use a mobile device to control the audio, lighting, temperature and electrochromatic window shades.

A blue HondaJet taking off from an airport on a clear sunny day
A blue HondaJet taking off from an airport on a clear sunny day

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Honda private jet price

Honda prides itself on the dealership network it has accrued for its very first aircraft, with dealers and trained technicians located in North America, South America and Europe. The Honda private jet is priced at around $4,500,000 USD by major US retailers.

Interesting facts

  • As Honda Aircraft Company’s first-ever aircraft, president and CEO Michimasa Fujino has referred to the HondaJet as his third daughter. Fujino’s close relationship with the jet he helped to engineer was most clearly demonstrated when, in 1996, Honda motioned to shut down its aircraft research and development; Fujino begged them several times to reconsider and continue with the project, eventually changing their minds with his passionate defence.

  • As well as offering a stylish lavatory with cobalt-blue sink and solid-surface luxury, Honda has also managed to install two skylights in the aft’s hull, providing lighting and a sense of space otherwise unattainable in jets of this class.

  • Not satisfied with their innovations to the HondaJet’s physical aerodynamics and efficiency, Honda also incorporated the latest avionic systems. Utilizing a dual SmartProbe system that combines multiple sensors into two individual components to minimize wiring and eliminate the need for failure-prone pneumatic tubing, the jet shares the same technology as high-tech aircraft like the F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter.

To charter a HondaJet or choose from a wide variety of other private jets, contact us on our site.

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