HondaJet faces a long haul

After nearly †three decades building an airplane from scratch, chief engineer Michimasa Fusion of the HondaJet, might have to reach a ripe old age before seeing Honda Motor Co’s pet aviation project recoup some of it’s development costs.†

I have previously written about the Asian market for business jets, so perhaps this is something that could be fit for the market?†

Honda has declined to reveal the actual development cost to the media, but the automaker has been researching aircraft development since 1986. Experts estimate the cost to be somewhere in the vicinity of US$1 billion, more than double the usual US$400 million typical for similar jets.†A five-year old delivery delay and developing their own engine also bumped up the cost dramatically.†

The HondaJet began deliveries in late 2015 and is priced slightly higher than competitors in the conservative bussinessjet segment. It is expected that it will take at least five full years after first delivery before the project will generate any kind of profits, not including so-called other “sunken" costs. Therefore, the project has always depended on Honda’s deep pockets to continue.†

According to Honda “we want to show customers that even though we don’t have a history of selling aircraft, we’re in the market because we have something to offer”. “For us, that’s more important than having a track record”.†

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Michimasa Fusion, CEO of Honda Aircraft Company, poses next to the Honda Business jet.

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