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Challenger 850 CS

The Canadair Regional Jet is a highly successful development of the Challenger 601 series of aircraft. During the late 1980s, Canadair studied the viability of stretching the Challenger to produce a small turbofan-powered airliner optimized for the regional route structure that was dominated at the time by turboprop aircraft. The fuselage of the resulting RJ was nearly twenty feet longer than that of the Challenger and the wingspan was almost six feet greater. Other changes included glass windshields in place of acryllic panes used on the Challenger, sturdier Dowty landing gear, steel brakes with greater stopping power and a cabin configuration of 50 seats arranged in pairs on either side of the center aisle.

In 2006, Bombardier began delivering the Challenger 850. Based on the then recently discontinued 50-seat CRJ200 airliner, it featured the same airframe and engines but with an interior outfitted for 27, 32, or 50 passengers in commuter configuration or 14 to 16 in executive. Bombardier delivered more than 60 Challenger 850s between 2006 and 2015, with the last of them selling for nearly $32 million; however, 2006 vintages now trade for as little as $8 million.

The Corporate Shuttle version of the RJ is normally fitted with 18 to 30 seats set at a roomier pitch, plus four to six full-swiveling single seats. In 2003 Bombardier rebranded the Challenger line and the Corporate Shuttle became known as the Challenger 850 corporate shuttle [CS].

The Challenger 850 CS derives from Canadairs Regional Jet series. The regional jet featured greater cabin space and wingspan as well as a sturdier frame. Rebranded in 2003, the airliner became the Bombardier Challenger 850. As a result, the 850 fuses the capabilities of a larger aircraft with the comfort and flexibility of an executive jet.

As a high-capacity business shuttle, the 850 CS requires a large powerhouse. A pair of General Electric CF34-3B1 turbofan engines provide 8,729 lbs of thrust apiece. Inspection interval is on condition. The 850 CSs cockpit is equipped with the Collins Pro Line 4 digital avionics package, dual digital comm/nav radios, dual Litton INS and FMS, TCAS, GPWS and WXR-840 color weather radar. Design modifications add to the 850 CSs reliability. These include steel brakes in the place of carbon, computer-controlled fly-by-wire system, and multiple fueling techniques: single-point, over-wing and digitally monitored.

For a larger aircraft, the Challenger 850 CS still compares with smaller, faster business jets in regards to performance. The 850 can travel at .85 Mach and reach a certified flight ceiling of 41,000 feet. During climb, it takes a relatively quick 32 minutes to reach 37,000 feet.

From the regional airliner to the Challenger 850 CS, one thing remained intact: the cabin. The interior measures 48.4 feet long, 8.3 feet wide and 6.1 feet high (stand-up, of course). True to form, the high-capacity jet seats 18-30, with four to six seats arranged executive-style. There is a generous aft lavatory as well as a staggering 324 cubic feet of pressurized baggage storage. The Challenger 850 CS is fully capable of accommodating a large group, compared to most executive aircraft.

The Challenger 850 is unique in that it originated from an airliner. It is an ideal executive jet for larger capacity travel, maintaining the spatial components of the airliner. However, the real appeal is that the 850 performs similar to a smaller, faster business jet, even with its superior accommodations. It is the perfect investment for a big company.




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