Honda Aircraft chief executive Michimasa Fujino stated on Tuesday he expects deliveries of the HondaJet to increase in 2019 above the estimated 50 aircraft customers will take this year, as the light business plane maker thinks of targeting Asia for growth.
In last year, the division of Honda Motor provided 43 of the six-seater light business jets, which rivals against planes such as Embraer SA’s popular Phenom 300.
Honda Aircraft has recently introduced a longer-range version of the plane named the HondaJet Elite and declared a new performance package this week to owners who want to update the original HondaJet.
In an interview on the sidelines of the largest business jet show this week in Orlando, Fujino stated he was targeting growth in the fledgling Japanese market, which he stated did not know business jets and had a less market penetration.
He is also keeping watch on sales in China, which is presently dominated by larger executive planes and where tight government dominates over airspace have hurt growth of the private jet market, analysts state.
Honda Aircraft does not release order figures. The last time it did so, in 2006, it stated it had received orders for well more than 100 jets.
“We have a very good, healthy backlog,” stated Fujino, without mentioning a specific number.
Fujino stated the company has delivered an estimated of 92 HondaJets.
General Aviation Manufacturers’ Association (GAMA)’s date notes that Honda Aircraft delivered 17 HondaJets during the first half of this year.