The HondaJet HA-420, the first aircraft developed by Honda Aircraft Company, is light business jet designed in Japan and manufactured in Greensboro, North Carolina.
This vessel is a low-wing monoplane with a progressive structure, it has a composite fuselage and an aluminum wing. The aircraft, which is powered by two GE Honda Aero-Engines HF120 turbofans mounted on pylons above the wing, has a retractable tricycle landing gear with both main and nose landing gear single-wheeled.
“The HondaJet raises the bar in entry-level light jets for passenger comfort, cabin quiet and baggage capacity. Optional luxury features, such as an externally serviced toilet and lavatory with running water, are not available in other light jets. The aircraft also has the best ride quality during the turbulence of any entry-level light jet in production, in our opinion,” says Fred George, senior editor and chief pilot with Business & Commercial Aviation and Aviation Week’s chief aircraft evaluation pilot. “Fit and finish of this aircraft are unsurpassed in its class. Exterior surface tolerances are tight, all doors fit precisely and the paintwork is superb. The interior furnishings also are first-rate, befitting of an aircraft that sells for more than $5.1 million with options.”
The over-wing engine mount configuration was intended to maximize cabin space, and attain lower wave drag at a high Mach number. The nose and wing are designed for laminar flow, and the main fuselage has a continuous profile, making a future stretch easier. The blend of engine placement, wing and fuselage were realized using computer simulations and wind tunnels. Honda says the combination of lightweight materials, aerodynamics, and efficient engines afford the HondaJet up to 20% better fuel efficiency than similar aircraft. When cruising at 43,000 feet, the jet consumes just 89.5 gallons of fuel per hour.
Inside the Masterpiece
The interior dimensions are 17.80 feet long, 5 feet wide, and 4.83 feet high, while the cabin is 12.1 feet
The aircraft comes with a touchscreen 3-display Garmin G3000 glass cockpit system and the cockpit readouts are shown on flat-panel displays.
According to Colin Goodwin, a freelance motoring journalist, “There is virtually no sensation of speed; only clouds rushing past under the wings give a clue to the fact that we’re moving through the air very quickly. The engines in cruise power are virtually silent and there’s no vibration. The 420 bit of the jet’s HA-420 name refers to its top speed of 420 knots. That puts it into the top-performance level of light jets. It’s economical, too, and with four passengers and their luggage, the Honda has a range of 1,400 miles.”
In 2014, Michimasa Fujino was given the International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences award for leading the design, as well as a Living Legends of Aviation Industry Leader of the Year award. The HondaJet has also received Flying Magazine’s first Flying Innovation Award in 2017, the 2014 ‘Best of What’s New’ title by Popular Science magazine and AIAA’s 2012 Aircraft Design Award, among many others.
As of October 2018, the 92 aircraft in service has logged 20,000 hours with a 99.7% dispatch reliability.