Last year, we had a look at HondaJet’s attractive Elite S, a cost-effective option for putting a jet in the driveway of the advanced hobbyist pilot or in the parking lot of a small company. Following that variation on the best-selling Elite theme is the newest version of the Elite II.
The Elite S offered a lot of plane for the money — steering augmentation, avionics sweetened with FAA Data Comm and ACARS, and a 1,437-nautical mile range can be optioned by buyers of the nimble $5.4 million escape ticket — and the new Elite II also gives tire-kickers in this class a lot to consider, beginning with a composite fuselage and over-the-wing engine mounts.
The Elite II’s range is now 1,547 nm, a fair boost from the Elite S. The Elite II can handle more weight, and has 62 cubic feet of storage on board; like the S, there’s also an efficiency boost, with a corresponding reduction in CO2 production.
But the Elite II’s most telling advances may rest in the intuitive interface-enhanced cockpit. The model features the ASAS (advanced steering) system, as well as a Stabilized Approach feature for tricky landings, and Automated Anti-Ice, Lighting, Pressurization and Ground Spoilers. An Autothrottle feature puts a new spin on autopilot, while Emergency Autoland speaks for itself.