Fred George, senior editor of Aviation Week's Business & Commercial Aviation magazine reports the following from EBACE.
When asked about the average time it takes Gulfstream to complete painting and interior outfitting of its new G650 flagships, Scott Neal, SVP sales and marketing, declined to disclose numbers.
One of the prime reasons that nearly serial number G650 aircraft have taken longer to complete than forecast is that they were delivered green into completion prior to the finalization of airworthiness and production requirements – thus, they have to be brought up to the current production standard with retrofit kits by the completion centers.
The other main reason is the typical steep learning curve challenges encountered by completion centers when tackling a new aircraft model. Operators tell Business & Commercial Aviation that Gulfstream is working hard to smooth out dozens of rough edges.
Neal did say that the G650 has had the most trouble-free entry-into-service record of any Gulfstream yet produced. Snags are bound to occur, but Gulfstream’s real-time health and trend monitoring system automatically reports high-level problems while the aircraft is in flight or on the ground to the company’s top-ranked product service and support organization. In one case, a G650 reported a problem six hours before reaching its destination airport – when it arrived, a technician and replacement parts were on site to fix the problem.