From The Archives: Will This Be The Model T Of Bizjets?

This image on the cover of the April 24, 2006 issue shows an Eclipse 500, a six-seat jet that would sell for less than $1 million, bringing jet ownership within reach of thousands of new customers.

This particular one is a pre-production aircraft sitting on the ramp outside Eclipse's headquarters in Albequerque, N.M., almost to the day 17 years ago. 

Anticipating that the low-cost very light jet will win FAA certification in June of 2006, the firm hoped to make 100 deliveries in 2006 and roll off 1,000 jets a year off its assembly line by the end of 2007. 

Read the feature on page 72, to discover more about the vision of Eclipse Aviation's founder, Vern Raburn, a former computer entrepreneur, who planned to reinvigorate the general aviation industry, by adopting the low-cost, mass production model used for personal computers. 

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