Embraer begins Legacy 450 / 500 production in Florida


Brazilian airframer Embraer has begun assembly of its Legacy 450 and Legacy 500 private jets at its Melbourne Florida facility.

The company held a ribbon cutting ceremony on June 1 to inaugurate its new facilities. The ceremony was attended by Florida dignitaries including Florida Governor Rick Scott, US Senator Bill Nelson, US Congressman Bill Posey, Florida, Brevard County and Melbourne officials.

Production of the new twin-jets will also continue in Brazil, with Embraer saying that they will look at switching all production to Melbourne if the market demands it.

To help support the addition of the Florida line Embraer has sent some Brazilian employees to Melbourne temporarily.

The first Legacy 450 fuselage (55010014) arrived in Melbourne in May, and is due to be completed before the end of 2016.

Embraer say that the ramp up in Legacy production will be slow, with one aircraft completion this year to be followed by a further four aircraft in 2017. Capacity of the line is currently six aircraft per month, with further slots available in Brazil.

The decision to open up the new line in Florida is driven by the US being the largest business jet market. Although the fuselage of the new Legacy’s are built in Brazil, and the wings are built in Portugal and shipped out to Brazil, around 60% of the Legacy’s are built in the US.

“With the support of Governor Scott, and his team at Enterprise Florida, the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, Brevard County, the City of Melbourne, and the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport, we are doubling the size of our campus in Melbourne with the addition of the Legacy 450 and Legacy 500 assembly lines,” said Marco Tulio Pellegrini, resident and CEO, Embraer Executive Jets. “The growth of our partnerships is a reward for the community’s trust, and for its visionary leaders.”

Separately Embraer will switch all Phenom production to Melbourne from July 1.

To help with the increased activities in Melbourne, Embraer officially opened a new 236,000 square-foot facility on June 2.

Included are a new assembly hangar, a paint paint facility, a completion center, a flight preparation facility, and a new delivery center.

The company will add a further 600 jobs to the local area.

Governor Scott said, “I am proud to join Embraer in cutting the ribbon of their expanded aircraft assembly facility today. Two years ago we announced that Embraer had chosen Florida as the best location in the U.S. to manufacture their new aircraft. Embraer already employs more than 1,000 Floridians and the addition of 600 new jobs is incredible news for Florida.”