This first in the private jet market provides additional cabin space, lower noise levels and improved fuel efficiency. The HondaJet was considered a pioneer in aviation innovation when it was first launched - also because it was the first business jet to be made entirely of composite materials. The aircraft is equipped with Garmin's advanced G3000 avionics system. It features three 14-inch landscape displays and two touchscreen controllers.
The HondaJet's airfoil and fuselage nose were developed over many years of research to find the optimal shape for a laminar flow. As a result, the jet relies on what is known as Natural Laminar Flow, which reduces drag and optimises the aircraft's cruise speed and fuel efficiency.
The HondaJet belongs to the Very Light Jets (VLJ), the class of the smallest aircraft currently available for business travel. Typically, VLJs seat between four and eight people comfortably. The original classification defined a maximum take-off weight of less than 10,000 kilograms as the most important classification feature. However, this hard weight limit is now obsolete and the HondaJet, like many of its direct competitors, is above this value.
The HondaJet took off for the first time on 1 July 2014 and received its official certification from the authorities just under a year later. The first delivery to customers took place on 23 December 2015. Less than three years later, the company introduced the second jet in the series in 2018, the HondaJet Elite, which featured improved avionics, a longer range and an optional galley. This was followed in May 2021 by the announcement of the HondaJet Elite S. In addition to the avionics system, the maximum take-off weight and again the range were improved in this variant.
In recognition of its achievements in the private business aviation segment, Honda Aircraft Company has already received several awards: Flying Magazine's Flying Innovation Award (2017) and the AIAA Foundation Award for Excellence (2018).
Advantages of an HA 420 Hondajet as a rental aircraft:
Distinctive: The HondaJet is the only business jet with the engines mounted above the wings. This engine configuration has lower drag and supports the efficient flight performance for which the jet is known.
Comfortable light jet: The comfortable cabin is one of the most important selling points of the HondaJet. The aircraft engineers took advantage of the parent company's knowledge of car interiors. The standard configuration features two forward-facing club seats and two rear seats with generous legroom. Unlike some other Very Light Jets, the Light Jet also has an adequate on-board toilet.
Low operating costs: As a relatively new aircraft type developed less than ten years ago, the HondaJet has lower operating costs than most of its competitors. This is mainly due to its newer technology and its fuel-saving higher maximum flight altitude.
Composite fuselage: Another innovation used in the HondaJet is the all-composite fuselage. Since the material is stronger than metal, the HondaJet gets by with comparatively thin walls. For a given external profile, the Honda aircraft has a larger cabin volume. Composite structures are also less susceptible to corrosive attack and allow for longer maintenance intervals.
Short-haul efficiency: The Business Jet offers the optimal range for flights between major European cities and regions or US hubs. For short-haul flights with few passengers, a modern light jet is the most efficient private flight solution.
Disadvantages of an HA 420 Hondajet as a rental aircraft:
Not suitable for long-haul travel: The small jet is unsuitable for journeys to more distant destinations. Both the short range and the lack of comfort that travellers expect on overseas flights are limiting factors. If more space and range is needed for a charter flight, the Phenom 300 from Embraer could be a possible alternative.
Requires a long runway: Access to smaller airfields is restricted as the private aircraft requires a take-off distance of 1,219 metres. For many popular destinations, this restriction does not matter. However, if remote destinations are to be flown to, the Phenom 100EV could be considered as a possible alternative with good short field performance.
The following three aircraft are possible charter alternatives if no HondaJet is available:
Embraer Phenom 100
Cessna Citation CJ2
Cessna Citation M2
The Embraer Phenom 100 is a possible alternative to the HondaJet with slightly higher variable costs per hour and a usually slightly higher charter price. The aircraft has a comparable cabin volume and can accommodate up to four passengers and two crew members. The Embraer is known for its stylish design and reliability.
Another alternative is the Cessna Citation CJ2. The Citation has a slightly greater range and cabin capacity. It can also take off and land from shorter runways. The CJ2 is the preferred choice for travel to remote destinations with shorter runways. It can comfortably seat up to six passengers and two crew members.
The CJ2's bigger brother, the Cessna Citation M2, offers two additional passenger seats and a slightly higher range. This makes it the preferred choice when greater range is needed. Like the HondaJet and the aforementioned alternatives, the M2 has a functional and comfortable interior in the cockpit and cabin.
Overall, the HondaJet is an excellent charter aircraft in the Very Light Jet segment. Its efficient engines coupled with the still unique design allow for comfortable short flights at absolutely competitive charter costs. The cabin is spacious enough for a flight lasting several hours and resembles the ambience of a luxury car. The modern composite construction supports aerodynamic and quiet flying. This benefits both the passengers in the aircraft and the inhabitants of the regions flown over. With these features, the HondaJet is rightly often the first choice when it comes to chartering a small aircraft with excellent value for money and reliable performance.
Aircraft data / Technical data
|Very Light Jet (VLJ)
|Honda Aircraft Company
|Number of units produced
|2 x GE Honda / HF120
|US$4.5 million (list price at launch of the model)
|1-2 pilots (single pilot operation approval)
|1 x rear
|Maximum flight altitude
|Maximum payload with full tank
|Capacity of the most common rental variant
|Cabin (length x width x height)
|5,43 m x 1,52 m x 1,47 m