First Flight of the Falcon 6X
May 26, 2021
After a stagnant year for new private jet models, aviation enthusiasts were ecstatic at the launch of Dassault Aviation’s Falcon 6X in December last year. Six months later, our excitement has not faltered after the company’s special announcement into the first quarter of 2021.
On March 10, Dassault Falcon 6X completed its first flight from its facility at Merignac, France. The flight is a major step towards opening the test campaign for certification (scheduled for 2022) and communicating the program’s overall maturity.
Flying with Purpose
The maiden flight was made in honor of pilot, politician, and company heir Olivier Dassault, who died on March 7 in an Airbus AS350 helicopter accident in Normandy with another pilot.
“Olivier was a Falcon pilot who perfectly embodied his family’s boundless passion for aviation,” says Dassault Aviation’s CEO and Chairman, Eric Trappier.
A Complete Success
With pilots Bruno Ferry and Fabrice Valette at the controls, the Falcon 6X flew exactly as predicted by the model.
“From a pilot’s perspective, it flies like a Falcon, which is to say with perfect precise handling in all phases of flight,” said Ferry. “Fabrice and I are honored to have made the latest first flight in another fantastic Falcon.”
The maiden flight tested the aircraft’s handling, engine responses, and behavior of onboard systems. After spending two and half hours in the sky, the aircraft topped out at 40,000 ft and reached a cruising speed of M.0.8 before returning to its base.
What makes the Falcon 6X stand out?
Fuel Efficient and High-Performing
While based on the design of the previous Falcon 5X, the Falcon 6X offers a greater intercontinental range of 5,500 nm. This enables the aircraft to fly from London to Hong Kong or Los Angeles to Moscow nonstop.
The aircraft is powered by PW812D engines from Pratt and Whitney, which consumes 10% less fuel than engines currently in service.
Comfortable and Stylish
The Falcon 6X is quiet, wide, and high quality. The aircraft can accommodate up to 16 passengers and even offers a roof window that illuminates the cabin in natural light, a pioneering design in the industry.
The Falcon 6X also sets the standard for widebody comfort. With a cabin six feet inches in height and eight feet, six inches in width, the model boasts the tallest and widest cabin in business aviation. This makes the aircraft a competitive contender for rivals Bombardier or Gulfstream, whose cabins are not as tall and wide as the 6X.
Falcon 6X is a front runner for efficiency and safety. The aircraft’s performance is aided by flaperons, the first time they will be included on a business jet. Perhaps you have heard of flaperons before. Previously a famous feature on Concorde, these wing features are now included on the Falcon 6X and stabilize the aircraft on steep approaches.
The 6X is also the first Falcon to see the FalconScan diagnostic system, which tracks and reports on over 100,000 maintenance parameters.
Still not impressed? The model features an advanced version of the ground-breaking digital flight control system first introduced on the Falcon 7X.
Dassulat’s renowned FalconEye vision system is another advanced feature of the 6X. It offers better situational awareness on approaches in darkness or unfavorable weather, providing better security and safety to pilots and passengers.
Watch this Space
This is not the last you’ve heard from the Falcon 6X. The next flight will combine test activities at Istres (near Marseille), where the Dassault flight test center is located. Falcon 6X s/n 02 and 03 are scheduled to take to the air in the coming months.