Cirrus says it has nearly 430 orders for the Cirrus Jet, giving
the company the impetus to move forward with its production plans.
But the price tag has jumped from $1.3 million to $1.72 million as
the airplane is refined and upgraded.
Vice President for Marketing Todd Simmons said the goal is to be
in production with the jet sometime in 2012, but won't commit to a
specific time frame. "That can be well late into 2012," Simmons
told the Duluth News Tribune. "We're not committing to a specific
time. There's a lot of testing and engineering going on."
Like so many things, the Cirrus Jet program faltered somewhat
during last year's economic downturn, as about 50 buyers asked for
refunds of their $100,000 deposits. The paper reports that Cirrus
shipped only 270 airplanes last year, the least since 2001.
Simmons said that orders started picking up in October, with the
recent pace being one or two orders every week for the
single-engine jet. But because of the price increase, customers
ordering now are not eligible to get their money back should the
decide not to buy the jet. As of late last week, there were 428
orders for the Cirrus Jet.