Honda Aircraft Company has recently cemented its claim of the HondaJet being the fastest jet in its segment after having been presented by the U.S. National Aeronautic Association with speed records for the Boston, Massachusetts to Palm Beach, Florida, course as well as the one from Teterboro, New Jersey to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. This award was given during the National Business Aviation Association's Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition held in Orlando, Florida. The two flights were piloted by Peter Kriegler and Glenn Gonzales and while the speed record has already been approved by the USNAA, it is also awaiting final approval for possible world records by none other than the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, based in Switzerland.
With regards to the Boston to Palm Beach course, the HondaJet started at the New Bedford Regional Airport leaving on July 19, 2016 at 7:18 a.m. EDT. It then arrived at Palm Beach International Airport by 9:16 a.m., resulting in a total flight time of 2 hours and 58 minutes over a distance of 1,060 nautical miles. With headwinds averaging around 30 knots, this means the HondaJet had an average true air speed of 385 knots with maximum ground speed measured to be 422 knots, or around 486 mph. This achievement is remarkable as well in the sense that the HondaJet is the first aircraft belonging to its segment that attained this particular record.
For the second course, HondaJet left the Teterboro Airport in New Jersey on April 9, 2016, at 2:15 p.m. EST. It then arrived at the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport in Florida by 4:06 p.m. During its transit, average speed of the headwinds was measured to be 60 knots, which is around 70 mph. Nevertheless, HondaJet flew at a 43,000-foot cruising altitude and covered the total 960 nautical miles in 2 hours and 51 minutes. Considering both the headwind and the high temperature, this meant that the HondaJet had average true air speed at 396 knots (456 mph) with top ground speed of 414 knots (478 mph).
Honda Aircraft CEO and President Michimasa Fujino shared that in order to show that the HondaJet would be able to transport customers faster compared to any light jet on the market, the company made sure to choose business aviation airports that were the busiest and had highly popular routes. This achievement showcased just how better the HondaJet is considering how the different innovations to the design, like the Over-The-Wing Engine Mount, managed to improve performance and enhance fuel efficiency, he added.
Considered as the most advanced of light jets, HondaJet comes with a unique design integrated to which are innovative technologies like its Over-The-Wing Engine Mount set-up, already patented, which lowers aerodynamic drag and thus enhances performance and fuel efficiency. This same configuration has been designed in a way that cabin sound is lowered while ground-detected noise is minimized. Through the OTWEM, HondaJet is able to deliver a cabin that offers the largest space in addition to having the largest baggage space as well as having a private aft lavatory that is fully serviceable. Other technologies include the composite fuselage and the natural laminar flow wing and fuselage nose.
The HondaJet does not only exhibit the fastest maximum cruise speed in its class at 42 knots (486 mph), it is also the model that flies the highest with maximum altitude measured at 43,000 feet. Fuel efficiency is top of the line as this is better by 17% compared to other models. In terms of range, it has NBAA IFR range measured at 1,223 nautical miles, or around 1,408 miles. Additional features of the HondaJet include having a flight deck utilizing sophisticated glass which is the Garmin G3000 customized by Honda. Indeed, the HondaJet may well be the first commercial aircraft there is, making it in line with Honda’s reputation in terms of quality, efficiency, value, and performance.
As American Honda Motor Co., Inc.’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Honda Aircraft Company was started in 2006 with headquarters based in North Carolina, the same place where aviation was born. The spirit that led Mr. Soichiro Honda to establish Honda Motor Co., Ltd. has led to the creation of Honda Aircraft as the brand aims to fulfil its goal of advancing human mobility to the skies.