On 1 September 2021, Scott Neal, the senior vice-president of worldwide sales of Gulfstream, informed reporters at Paris–Le Bourget Airport in France that the Gulfstream G700 set two transatlantic speed records flying between three cities.
The first record was set when a Gulfstream G700 production test aircraft flew from Savannah in the US state of Georgia on 27 August bound for Qatar’s capital Doha. The aircraft flew non-stop for 13 hours and 16 minutes at an average speed of Mach 0.88, or 1086.3 kph, to cover the distance of 6,711 nautical miles.
It then broke its own speed record by flying from Doha to Paris on 31 August. The Gulfstream G700 covered a distance of 2,953 nm in six hours and 15 minutes at an average speed of Mach 0.90, or 1,111.3 kph.
The two records are significant because the Gulfstream G700 is the world’s largest business jet.
Gulfstream unveiled the G700 for the first time on 21 October 2019. By July 2021, it had completed around 1,600 hours of testing on its five test aircraft.
Seen as Gulfstream’s answer to its competitor, Bombardier Global 7500 aircraft, the G700 is expected to begin deliveries in 2022.
Who will be Gulfstream G700’s first customer?
Qatar Executive, a subsidiary of Qatar Airways, will be the first to operate Gulfstream G700.
Qatar Executive was created in 2009 with an aim to cater to clients who like to fly in private jets. It is the largest owner-operator of the Gulfstream G650ER, of which it has seven aircraft. Eight more are to be delivered by mid 2022. Three Bombardier Global 5000s, one Bombardier Global XRS and one Airbus A319CJ are also part of Qatar Executive fleet.
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The Gulfstream G700 will add to the fleet of Gulfstream G650ER.
What are the cockpit features of Gulfstream G700?
According to Gulfstream, the G700 features a ‘Symmetry Flight Deck’ which has active control sidesticks and touch-screen avionics that are paired with its trademarked Phase-of-Flight intelligence. This, as per Gulfstream, helps reduce the start-up time of the aircraft and pilot workload.
Pilots will be able to land aircraft much more safely using the Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS) with dual head-up displays. There is also the Predictive Landing Performance System assisting pilots and enhancing safety during landing.
What are the other technical specifications?
Gulfstream G700 is powered by two Rolls-Royce Pearl 700 engines each of which has a rated take-off thrust of 81.20kN.
The maximum range of the aircraft is 13,890 kilometres. The speed, as stated earlier, is Mach 0.90. The aircraft has a maximum take-off weight of 48,807 kg.
What are the features of the cabin?
With a wingspan of 31.39 metres, the incredibly large (by private jet standards) Gulfstream G700 is designed for the utmost luxury in the skies.
The cabin has a total length of 19.41 metres, the width measures 2.49 metres and the height is 1.91 metres. Gulfstream describes the cabin as the “most spacious in the industry”.
There are 20 large oval windows, 10 on either side, bring in enough natural light during flights in daytime and allowing the best of visibility of the night sky for passengers.
As for luxury, all of the seats are from Gulfstream’s handcrafted collection and placed optimally next to the windows. They can be converted to ergonomic beds for a comfortable rest whenever needed.
The configurations of the interior is flexible. Up to five living areas can be created. The number of passengers to sleep and seat varies according to the configuration of the living areas. The G700 comes with a master suite equipped with a shower.
The circadian lighting system helps increasing the comfort quotient for passengers and reduce jet lag.
(Main and featured images: Gulfstream)