Honda Aircraft Company launched the European sales programme for the HondaJet advanced light jet at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (EBACE), reporting a first sale of the aircraft to high profile Formula One driver and business entrepreneur, Jenson Button.
It also said that it will establish a new European network of three HondaJet-exclusive sales and service centres.
Button has placed orders for two HondaJets, priced at $3.9 million each, for an aviation charter business he plans to form, Honda said in a statement. The first delivery will be in late 2012.
The new world headquarters, as well as the R&D and production facilities, that Honda Aircraft Company is building at the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, NC, will serve as the worldwide delivery centre for HondaJet.
It will also serve as the location for all customer deliveries worldwide, beginning with US customers in 2010, and followed by European customers in 2012.
Honda Aircraft, wholly owned by Honda Motor, began sales of the fuel-efficient HondaJet in October 2006 in the United States and has, so far, amassed orders for more than 100 aircraft. It expects to achieve US Federal Aviation type certification in 2010.
Honda also announced an expansion of its relationship with FlightSafety International, a pilot training company, to provide its customers with flight training in Europe. Further, Honda debuted a new in-flight entertainment (IFE) system concept, that features personal control of in-cabin video and audio entertainment, climate systems, and cabin/cockpit communications through high-definition touch panel displays.