It's hoping for a 2015 entry into service

Honda Aircraft Company's HondaJet took its first flight last week, furthering the company's goal toward Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification and entry into service by 2015. 

According to HondaJet, the aircraft lifted off from the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, North Carolina at 10:18 a.m. EST. It was an 84-minute flight where the aircraft climbed to 15,500 feet and reached a speed of 348 Knots True Airspeed (KTAS). The aircraft landed safely. 

“With this first flight, the HondaJet program has entered the next exciting phase as we prepare for delivery,” said Honda Aircraft Company President and CEO Michimasa Fujino.

“Today’s celebration is the culmination of extensive engineering and production efforts, and this is an important achievement in bringing the world’s most advanced light jet to market.”
The jet is capable of flying at a maximum cruise speed of 420 knots (483 MPH) and has a maximum altitude of 43,000 feet. The aircraft seats up to five passengers and can travel at an NBAA IFR range of 1,180 nautical miles (1,357 miles).

The HondaJet has an Over-The-Wing Engine Mount (OTWEM) configuration, natural laminar flow wing and composite fuselage for a lightweight and advanced flight experience. 

Honda initially announced its plans to make jets back in 2006. That same year, it established the HondaJet branch in Greensboro. 

But the road to HondaJet's first flight wasn't an easy one. In 2011, engine troubles caused by ice during testing led Honda to delay HondaJet delivery until mid-2013. 

The HondaJet will be single-pilot certified and is currently offered for sale in North America and Europe through the HondaJet dealer network.

Source: HondaJet

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