The Citation Jet is the perfect choice for anyone looking for an entry-level private business jet. It is designed to be extremely economical, both in purchase price and operating costs: the CJ’s systems are simple, making it easy to fly and operate by a single pilot.
The design goals of the Citation Jet can be summed up in three words: simplicity, economy and performance. This objective proved to be a challenge, especially in creating an aerodynamic structure that is cheap to produce and handles well. Previous Citations had used a straight wing, which slows the aircraft considerably but dramatically reduces production and design costs. The Citation Jet upgraded to a natural laminar flow wing, taking four years to design in a joint venture between Cessna and NASA.
The increased speed, due to the reduced drag on the wings, is augmented by the speed provided by two Williams/Rolls-Royce FJ44-1A engines. Williams/Rolls Royce used to produce engines for cruise missiles, and was able to produce engines that generated 1,900 pounds of thrust each, while being aerodynamic and light enough for the CJ. The FJ44 engines were simplified to have a third of the moving parts that most engines of that time did, as well as burning about 30% less fuel than comparable jet engines.
The Citation Jet has good short field runway abilities, needing only 3,080 feet to take off at sea level, and 5,710 feet to take off from a runway at 5,000 feet. It can climb to 37,000 feet in 25 minutes. Its high speed cruise is 378 knots, and its long range cruise speed is 323 knots, where it flies at its maximum certified ceiling of 45,000 feet.
As previously mentioned, the Citation Jet is very easy to fly. It was designed for forward-thinking businessmen that would fly their own private jets to and from business meetings, resulting in several automated systems and a simple avionics system. Its ability to be flown by a single pilot offers greater flexibility in flight operations and reduced per-hour flight costs.
The cabin of the Citation Jet falls within the average cabin size of other five-passenger light private jets. The cabin is 4.7 feet high, 4.8 feet wide and 11 feet long.
The Citation Jet began an extremely successful line of private jets. The first Citation Jet garnered 53 orders just two days after it was announced at a private jet exhibition. It is ideal for small companies and individuals looking for an economical private jet for short-range missions, usually a little over an hour. Possible nonstop flights with maximum passengers include Los Angeles to Aspen, and Washington, D.C. to Miami.