Dassault Falcon deliveries up year-on-year


Dassault Aviation reported 41 net Falcon jet orders in the first half of this year, compared with 25 in the same period of last year, despite uncertain times for aviation manufacturers, their supply chains and the global economy. 

“Despite all the uncertainties, we continue to see good sales despite the cancellation of Russian orders [due to the war in Ukraine],” said Éric Trappier, chairman and CEO Dassault Aviation at NBAA-BACE this week in Orlando, Florida. Sales remained strong, particularly in Europe, US and south-east Asia. The OEM’s backlog reached “historically strong” levels over the first half of 2022 totalling 34bn ($33.48bn), compared with 21bn ($20.68bn) in H1 last year – partly reflecting fighter export orders.

An order for 42 Rafale fighter aircraft from the French Airforce is expected next year. “This order will give the group a high level of profitability – at least for the next 10 years,” said Trappier.

In addition to the war, Dassault expressed concern about energy supplies and pricing, inflation and interest rates and the continuing effects of the global pandemic. “We still have Covid – although in many countries, vaccines continue to mitigate its effects,” Trappier told Corporate Jet Investor (CJI). “But in China, Covid is definitely still on, affecting that part of the supply chain.” 

Asked about the prospect of an imminent global recession, Trappier said: “While an economic crisis or recession in the coming weeks is a risk, we are not sure …”.  Like all OEMs, Dassault monitors the research from European and US industry groups such as General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA). “We try to develop the idea of new stock in order to be more flexible when the crisis is on.”

Many aircraft manufacturers at NBAA-BACE revealed significant investment in infrastructure and Dassault was no exception. The company plans to build a new MRO facility at Melbourne, Florida, as part of its global expansion of MRO services. Opening in late 2024, the 175,000sqft complex is designed to house 18 Falcons at the same time, including the new Falcon 10X. 

The investment will also fund a new 54,000sqft paint shop, offices and customer lounges. “The new Melbourne facility will mainly serve North and South American customers for major inspections, repairs and upgrades for all Falcons,” said Trappier. It will enable the OEM to grow its presence in the US, as the Falcon fleet grows with the entry into service of the Falcon 10X and the extra widebody Falcon 6X. Dassault chose Melbourne, after evaluating several potential locations, for its positive business environment and highly skilled workforce on the Space Coast.

In the United Arab Emirates, the OEM’s ExecuJet MRO Services unit will open a new maintenance facility in Dubai in the first quarter of next year. 

In 2024, Dassault will open a new heavy maintenance facility in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to improve its maintenance service in the Eastern Hemisphere.

The manufacturer now operates 40 factory service locations and 20 authorised service centres worldwide.

Dassault engineers analyse flight data at the work bench. (Credit: Dassault Aviation)