In October, the Federal Aviation Administration certified Embraer’s first midsize jet, the Legacy 500, and the company says it expects to deliver as many as six of the airplanes by year’s end. The clean-sheet design features fly-by-wire controls, which enable the crew to maneuver the jet using computer signals instead of mechanical linkages. In the cabin, passengers find a space 6 feet tall and 6 feet 10 inches wide, with a flat floor and eight ergonomic seats that convert to fully flat berths. Optional divans can increase the number of seats to 12. Passenger comfort is enhanced by big, well-placed windows; a full galley; low cabin altitude; and a roomy lavatory with its own window and plenty of storage space.
The jet has a range of 3,600 miles and flies at speeds up to 536 mph. In the cockpit, the crew is supported by a Rockwell Collins Pro Line Fusion avionics suite, side-stick controls, and a fully ergonomic design. The plane’s Honeywell HTF7500E jet engines are designed to be fuel-efficient, reliable, and easy to maintain. The Legacy 500 starts at $20 million. A smaller version of the jet, the Legacy 450, is expected to start deliveries next year. (embraerexecutivejets.com)