In the development of the private jet aircraft, Learjet Corporation has played a historical role in commercialization of the concept. The Learjet 23 is considered by many to be the very first successful business aircraft in existence. The aircraft was able to seat 6 passengers at once and the production only stretched until 1966 after about 100 units had been sold. Today, that number might seem quite small considering the record sales that makers like Embraer are able to achieve. At that time however, the Learjet 23 had set a benchmark for private jets of the future to come in and try to emulate.
Today, the Learjet Corporation is a thing of the past. In 2021, Bombardier, the current owner of the Learjet company decided to cease production of all Learjet aircraft. A legacy that had been over 60 years in the making was stopped in its tracks owing to the difficult business conditions brought on by the Pandemic. However, the aircraft that came out of the factory in Wichita, Kansas still fly to this day, proudly carrying on the legacy of a brand that laid the very foundation of modern business travel.
Learjet 60: Longevity Is the Name of the Game
A long production run that spanned over 2 decades is the best evidence of how popular the Learjet 60 aircraft was when it released. It is a mid-sized jet with a range of over 2400 nautical miles, making it perfect for travel across states as well as international travel. While it can’t really be considered a super-midsize jet, the Learjet 60 is quite well-featured and periodic updates meant that a jet released in the early 90s was still able to compete with jets released at the dawn of the 2010s.
The Learjet 60 was envisioned as more of a Learjet 55+, in the sense that the aircraft is fundamentally the same as its predecessor. However, it sports a longer fuselage, and the engines were given a decent bit of a power boost in order to carry the weight of the larger aircraft. Considered by aviation enthusiasts to be the last true Learjet, the 60 was the last aircraft that was based on the original design that Bill Lear had come up with. After 2007, the Learjet 60 was discontinued with having sold 318 units. The aircraft was a very reliable performer with one fatal flaw, the fact that it had the landing gear of the Learjet 23, meaning that the aircraft would have one of the highest accident rates while landing. The Learjet 60XR was released in 2007 with slight improvements everywhere in the cabin in order to update the aging design with time.
Learjet 60 Charter
Today, after a decade of having seen no production, it is quite remarkable to see that the Learjet 60 is still one of the most requested aircraft for private jet charter. This is mainly due to the fact that the charter costs of the aircraft are quite manageable considering its size and range. Since the aircraft can be bought used in good condition for about $1 million, charter companies will accept a rate at the lower end since the input cost is basically nothing compared to other new jets.
The charter cost for the Learjet 60 is about $4000 per hour. Compared to other similar midsize jets, the cost is a complete bargain. If you are in the market for buying a Learjet 60, make sure to be cognizant of the fact that despite the low selling price, the jet will require considerable maintenance owing to its age.
Learjet 60 Interior: Classic
The interior of the Learjet 60 will definitely show its age to you but in a good way. One look inside the jet and you feel like you have been transported into a late 80s Wall Street movie. The seats that have been stitched with leather that reminds you of seats in old S-Classes are extremely comfy, in ways that modern jets simply cannot. While the space management definitely pales compared to modern jets, you will be more than comfortable inside this mid-size classic. It has a passenger capacity of 8 people and the copious use of leather all around will either really resonate with you or really make your vomit.
Talking about numbers, the cabin height is an extremely impressive 5 feet and 9 inches. The width comes in at about 5 feet and 11 inches, but the cabin can often feel even more narrow than that. From one end to another, the length of the cabin is 17 feet and 8 inches.
Learjet 60 Exterior: An American Thoroughbred
One of the things that you need to understand in order to really ‘get’ the soul of this aircraft is that it was envisioned and made in a time when American design and aesthetic was extremely influential in the world. There was a very obvious ‘machoness’ to it, complemented by beigy colors. The cars of the 70s,80s and 90s are still fresh in American memory and modern versions are often berated for looking too ‘exotic’ (watered down versions of European manufacturing).
The exterior of the jet has surprisingly enough not aged that much. Today, the Learjet 60 sandwiched between two Embraer Phenom 300s will not look out of place. The exterior can be described as sober yet masculine. The swept-wing design adds angularity to the design and makes for a very interesting combination for jet enthusiasts to marvel at.
The height of the aircraft from the outside is 14 feet and 8 inches. The wingspan is a relatively short, 43 feet and 9 inches. However, the length is a simply massive 58 feet and 8 inches, making for a really long aircraft. If you are trying to spot this aircraft, the dead giveaway is the ‘ogive’ winglet trailing edge, one of the biggest innovations that Learjet brought with the introduction of this aircraft.
The Learjet 60 is an aircraft which connects itself directly to the Learjet 23, the very first business jet that actually managed to sell more than a few units. Today, while the Learjet Corporation is not producing any new aircraft anymore, the company is still continuing to support existing models for maintenance and spare parts. Overall, this aircraft is a relic of another time when fuel was cheaper, and the internet was yet to come. The interior still sings the stories of the business deals struck inside the premises of the aircraft. Even the earliest Learjets that were produced in the early 90s are still in production today, something that speaks volumes about the fact that the Learjet 60 is a good machine at its very core. If you are interested in chartering a jet, scroll to the end of the page and fill out your charter request. We will reach you as soon as possible and cater to your request with unmatched speed.