Cessna has increased the range of its new Latitude midsize business jet, leaving little doubt the new aircraft is a direct response to Embraer's entry to that market. When it was introduced at NBAA last October the 2,000-nm range raised eyebrows as it was the shortest of any in that segment. In a news release last week, Cessna said the new number is 2,300 nm, matching the Embraer Legacy 450 and a little better than others in that slot.
The Embraer influence is evident in other aspects of the Latitude design. For instance, the Latitude, although it's smaller than the Sovereign and Citation Ten, is much roomier in the cabin, matching the 450's standup cabin height (six-foot) and more than six-foot width. Where the Latitude has the 450 beat is in short-field performance. The Embraer lists a takeoff distance of 5,000 while the Latitude is expected to need just 3,900. The Cessna is $14.9 million and the Embraer $15.25 million.