The Hawker 400XP has become a very familiar fixture in the private jet industry, as it has been for sale in the mainstream market in one form or another since 1985 when Hawker Beechcraft Corporation’s previous owner Raytheon purchased the Diamond I (MU-300) from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Mitsubishi had designed it to be the best private jet available in the charter business jet industry, and appropriately called it the Mitsubishi MU-300 Diamond. Raytheon modified the design and began to manufacture it in their aircraft facility in Wichita, Kansas. They called it the Beechjet 400. For five years after the Beechjet 400’s release, Raytheon continued to improve its design. The aircraft was recertified as the Beechjet 400A in 1989, and in 2003, the name was changed to Hawker 400XP joining the Hawker product line to better reflect the aircraft’s flight-crew-flown status as opposed to the predominantly owner-flown status in the Beechcraft product line.
The Hawker 400XP is remarkable in that it has maintained a steady pace of sales over its 18 years on the market, and shows no signs of slowing. Although newer jets are continually released, built with the advantages that 15 or more years of technological progress provides, the Hawker 400XP steadily maintains its unique, powerful draw on the private jet sales market.
Those flying in the Hawker 400XP are usually surprised at how spacious the cabin is. As with every portion of this jet, the attention to detail in its design is apparent. The cabin has a flat floor and an oval shape, maximizing the amount of usable space. The 305 cubic-foot cabin is generally configured for seven passengers, with seats that can swivel 180 degrees. Fold-out work tables come standard in the club section. Amenities include a fully enclosed lavatory and a modest refreshment cabinet. A total of 56.4 cubic feet of baggage space is available between internal and external storage compartments.
One of the Hawker 400XP’s strongest assets is its cabin size. The other is its speed. The Hawker 400XP can climb a cruising altitude of 37,000 feet in 18 minutes. Optimal cruise speed for long-range trips is 414 ktas, although the aircraft is able to reach speeds up to 450 ktas. Although the Hawker 400XP can fly up to 1,333 miles with four passengers, NBAA IFR reserves, and a 200 nm alternate, it fares particularly well on the short-and mid-range trips for which it was designed. A 300 nautical mile trip with four passengers and the aforementioned reserves would take 46 minutes and burn 1,099 pounds of fuel. Compare that to the Cessna Encore+, which would complete the same trip in exactly the same time and burn 1,061 pounds of fuel. The minute difference in fuel consumption is stunning, since the Encore+ was certified in 2006, a full 17 years after the Hawker 400A. Even the 17 years of technological advances available to the Encore+ (and the additional $884,000 in price) are not enough to allow it to beat the Hawker 400XP by any significant margin. Differences between the two aircraft for 600 and 1,000 nautical mile trips are equally negligible.
Two Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D- 5 engines provide the power for the Hawker 400XP. The JT15D engines, which have become ubiquitous among private jets, provide 2,965 pounds of thrust apiece on takeoff, enough to allow the 400XP to take off in 3,906 feet from a sea level runway. On a runway at an altitude of 5,000 feet and a temperature of 77° F, the Hawker 400XP’s runway requirements increase to 6,311 feet.
The Hawker 400XP enjoys unique status in the private jet industry as one of the longest-selling aircraft on the market. This $7.22 million private jet has maintained both a competitive edge and an impeccable safety record throughout 18 years (and counting) of flight.