Hawker 4000 (Horizon)
Hawker Beechcraft’s Hawker 4000, more commonly known as the Hawker Horizon, has been serving its owners well since it went into service in 2005. Hawker Beechcraft had high hopes for this private jet – they designed it to meet the high standards of comfort and performance required in the super midsized category of aircraft. To give the 4000 a competitive edge, Hawker Beechcraft selected a carbon fiber fuselage, making the 4000 the first business jet to use one. Hawker 4000’s closest competitor, the Challenger 300, is so similar in many areas that it seems the two private jets were designed with the other in mind. They differ by just $30,000 in price and barely differ in many areas of performance.
The cabin is one of the areas of divergence between the two private jets. The interior of the Hawker 4000 measures 29.5 feet long, 6 feet high, and 6.5 feet wide. The Challenger 300, by comparison, lacks 1 foot in length but exceeds the Hawker 4000 by 1 inch in height and by 8 inches in width. Total cabin volume for the Hawker 4000 is 762 cubic feet, a sizeable distinction from the Challenger 300’s 860 cubic foot cabin.
Both cabins can be configured for 8 to 14 passengers. The 4000 has 115 cubic feet of baggage space, slightly more than the Challenger 300’s 106 cubic feet. The Hawker 4000’s interior is quite luxurious, as befits a private jet of its size. The cabin is equipped with all the amenities necessary for a productive office at 45,000 feet: individual worktables, power outlets, and a MagnaStar 2000 air-to-ground phone all come standard. Cabin entertainment systems include a CD/DVD player, Rockwell Collins Airshow map, and a full galley with plenty of storage space. Additional entertainment and office amenities can be added as desired.
Hawker Beechcraft chose Pratt and Whitney Canada’s PW308A engines to power their private jets. The PW308A is flat rated to 6,900 pounds of thrust, only slightly more than the 6,826 pounds of thrust produced by the Challenger 300’s Honeywell HTF7000 engines. The inspection interval for the PW308A is 6,000 hours and on-condition for the HTF7000.
The Hawker 4000 lags somewhat behind the Challenger 300 in runway performance: on a sea level runway, the 4000 requires 5,200 feet, while the Challenger 300 requires only 4,810 feet. The difference becomes more evident on a runway at 5,000 feet above sea level: the 4000 can take off in 7,625 feet; the Challenger 300 can take off in 6,768 feet. Both private jets can climb to 37,000 feet in 14 minutes. Cruise speeds of the two aircraft are fairly similar: the Hawker 4000’s long range speed cruise is 447 ktas and the Challenger 300’s is 459. Their high speed cruises are identical at 470 ktas.
The slight differences in cruise speed and more noteworthy gaps in runway performance even out on actual missions: for a 1,000 nautical mile trip with four passengers, crew, and required NBAA IFR reserves, the Hawker 4000 actually takes off 445 feet before the Challenger 300. Both aircraft would reach their destinations in 2 hours and 18 minutes. The only major difference in the trip would be in fuel burn: the Hawker 4000 would consume 4,260 pounds of fuel, 361 pounds more than the Challenger 300.
In summary, the Hawker 4000 and the Challenger 300 are very close competitors. Their differences in runway performance, cruise speeds, and flight time are negligible. The Hawker 4000’s price tag of $19.95 million is just slightly under the $19.98 million Challenger 300.The only differences large enough to take into consideration when choosing between the two are the 4000’s sizeable cabin and the Challenger 300’s economical fuel burn.
*Beware MagnaStar phone system has been threatening to shutdown for the past couple of years.