Citation M2 Makes Its Maiden Voyage: How Many Aircraft Does Cessna Need?

The Cessna Citation M2 made its first test flight on Friday and was met with all of the typical quotes from the people involved.  They talked about how it performed just as expected and how it will be such a blessing to their customers.

That’s great that everything went so well, but I for one have to wonder if Cessna really needs another aircraft.  According to the press release from Cessna, the M2 “fills the gap between the Citation Mustang and the Citation CJ family”.  Exactly how big of a gap do they think exists there.  If you look at the Mustang, various CJ aircraft, and the new M2, most people would be hard pressed to tell you the difference.

I understand that the avionics is an upgrade over previous aircraft, but do you really need an entirely new aircraft to roll out some new avionics?  How about upgrading one of your existing aircraft instead of coming out with a new aircraft every other year?

Cessna is THE American aircraft company in my eyes.  They cover pretty much the entire general aviation market with the exception of the airline size aircraft.  They make great aircraft that are a testament to the quality of American manufacturing, but this constant roll out of new aircraft almost makes them look desperate.

Maybe I am forgetting someone, but I can’t think of a single aircraft manufacturer that offers half as many business jets as Cessna.  I would start listing them all, but just the thought of it makes my head hurt.  Most companies offer 5-10 aircraft at the very most, but without even trying I can think of at least 20 jet aircraft that Cessna offers.

You have to wonder if spreading out so much is hurting their business.  Instead of just focusing on a smaller number of aircraft and making them awesome, I get the feeling that they are trying to be a jack of all trades, but master of none.

It also seems to me that people almost start ignoring new aircraft from Cessna because there are so many of them.

I really hope that this does help their business as Cessna is a very important company in this country, I just can’t help but wonder what they are trying to accomplish with releasing new aircraft all the time.