Cessna Citation CJ3+: Buyer’s and Investor’s guide
A more-advanced and updated version of an already proven light jet. A capable jet that is easy and cheap to operate. Clever designs found throughout the aircraft.
Slightly slower than other light jets, but not something to really worry about on short flights.
The Citation CJ3+ is the updated version of the CJ3, which was first produced in 2004. The most notable upgrades are in the cabin as well as new avionics. The CJ3 proved popular with more than 400 aircraft being delivered. As an update of this, it is easy to see that the CJ3+ will be a success for Cessna.
The CJ3+ is also a striking aircraft. A wingspan of over 54ft as well as the classic Citation design gives it more ramp presence than other light jets.
The Citation CJ3+ has a maximum speed of 478mph/770kph/0.62mach – significantly slower than other light jets.
What the aircraft lacks in speed it makes up for in range. Maximum range is 2347miles/3778kph/2039nm – enough to connect London with all of Europe or Los Angeles with Chicago easily. With favourable weather conditions the CJ3+ is able to fly coast-to-coast missions in the US. Like other aircraft in its sector, it is certified for single-pilot operation.
There is 1,000lbs/60 c.u ft. of baggage space in the CJ3+ – equating to around 12 medium-sized suitcases or 10 golf bags.
The CJ3+ features upgraded avionics in the form of a Garmin 3000 system. Although this may seem unimportant to passengers – it makes for a more-comfortable and safer journey. The avionics now include automatic cabin pressurisation to under 8,000ft as well as an emergency descent mode should cabin pressure drop mid-flight.
The cabin is where you see the benefits of the CJ3+ upgrades. The cabin comes with LED cabin lighting, a satcom phone and wireless cabin technology which allows passengers to connect to WiFi, XM radio and access to a wireless media centre. Flight information such as moving maps can also be viewed on personal devices.
Other features include a seated lavatory (that provides a seat for another passenger) as well as a refreshment centre at the front of the cabin.
The cabin is only 4ft 8in high and 4ft 8in wide – slightly smaller than competition such as the Learjet 75 and the Phenom 300. This reduces cabin comfort – but Cessna has designed the interior to maximise the space that is available.
A club-seat layout and executive tables creates a good work environment. Although the seats are narrow, they swing out to provide additional legroom. Folding armrests also provide more space when walking through the cabin.
The cabin can be configured in six different themes – all of which look stylish – complemented with the use of high-quality materials.
Overall, it is a smart cabin filled with quality designs and engineering to utilise all of the cabin space.
Aircraft ownership is always risky – but being built on an established platform with modern upgrades from a company with a huge heritage in corporate jets reduces the risk of the CJ3+.
The CJ3+ is cheaper to run in terms of variable cost in comparison to the Learjet 70 and 75 as well as the Phenom 300.
Currently, the CJ3+ has stayed out of the pre-owned market – but for guidance a one-year-old aircraft usually costs 10-15% less than the price of a new aircraft.
The upgrades should see pre-owned prices remain stronger than for most other light jets, especially over the CJ3.
Maximum range: 2347miles/3778kph/2039nm
Maximum speed: 478mph/770kph/0.62mach
Typical passengers: 4
Typical crew: 1
Competition aircraft: Phenom 300, Learjet 70, Learjet 75, PC-24, CJ3, CJ4, CJ2+
List price for new aircraft: $8.3 million
Price for pre-owned aircraft: N/A