Company Predicts Jet Should "Easily" Reach 340 KTAS
Last week, Aero-News reported on the
first flight of the single-engine Excel-Jet
Sport-Jet -- and Monday, ANN brought you an exclusive interview
with company CEO Bob Bornhofen (below).
During that interview -- available as an Aero-News Special
Feature Aero-Cast, which you may download
here -- Bornhofen told ANN the company's plan
was to keep the Sport-Jet flying... and, sure enough, one week
after that first flight, the little jet is spending little time on
"We are clearly validating our preliminary estimates of
performance," said Bornhofen. "In fact, we may exceed initial
On a recent test flight, test pilot Ron McElroy "cleaned up" the
aircraft, retracting the landing gear and flaps.
"After eight hours of successful flight testing... we have flown
Sport-Jet to within 80% of projected cruise speed," McElroy told
ANN. "The aircraft continues to exhibit excellent stability and
flight handling and is just a joy to fly."
"Even at lower altitudes, we are indicating 195 knots Indicated
Air Speed. This figure comes while there is still plenty of
available thrust left," Bornhofen said.
Based on these results, he added that the airplane should easily
reach its target of 340 knots TAS at 25,000 feet.
"We now feel very confident of reaching our original performance
estimates," said Bornhofen. "We are extremely pleased with the
takeoff performance... Even though we are deliberately using less
than takeoff thrust, our ground rolls are under 12 seconds."
Bornhofen added the Sport Jet is climbing at better than 2,000
feet per minute, at 150 KIAS... not bad, considering the jet is
taking off from Colorado Springs, at an elevation of 6,000
The Sport-Jet is a single engine personal jet aircraft aimed at
the general aviation pilot. Sport-Jet has been designed for
single-person operation by a pilot trained in piston-powered
airplanes. Many advanced features and a simplified design ease
Excel-Jet reports the four-seat Sport-Jet will sell for about $1
million, and fly more than 900 nautical miles with a full