The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS and Gulfstream G280 are the two smallest aircraft currently in production from each manufacturer.
Both aircraft are capable of flying non-stop between New York and London. Therefore, these aircraft are direct competitors and extremely similar in their capabilities.
As a result, it is important to consider where these aircraft differ in terms of comfort, performance, and cost.
Let’s start off the comparison of these two aircraft by taking a look at the powerplants.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS powered by Pratt & Whitney Canada’s PW308C engines and the Gulfstream G280 is propelled by Honeywell’s HTF7250G engines.
In terms of thrust output, each PW308C engine on the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS generates 7,000 lbs (3,175 kg), giving a total thrust output of 14,000 lbs (6,350 kg).
Comparatively, each HTF7250G engine on the Gulfstream G280 provides a heftier 7,624 lbs (3,459 kg) of thrust, leading to a total thrust output of 15,248 lbs (6,918 kg).
Performance in speed and altitude also varies between the two aircraft.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS can reach a high-speed cruise of 490 knots (907 km/h) and a long-range cruise speed of 435 knots (806 km/h).
In contrast, the Gulfstream G280 has a slightly lower high-speed cruise at 482 knots (893 km/h), but surpasses the Falcon 2000LXS in long-range cruise speed at 459 knots (850 km/h).
A difference in maximum cruise speed of 8 knots is unlikely to go noticed in real-world applications. However, when extracting the maximum range from these aircraft a difference of 24 knots will likely make a difference.
For example, if both aircraft are flying at their maximum cruise speed, every 1,000 nautical miles the Falcon 2000LXS will be 2 minutes faster than the G280.
However, if both are flying at their long-range cruise speeds the G280 will save you around 7 minutes for every 1,000 nautical miles flown.
Therefore, if flying between London and New York the Falcon 2000LXS will save you around 6 minutes at the maximum cruise speed while the G280 will save you around 21 minutes if flown at the long-range cruise speed.
In terms of maximum altitude, the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS can ascend to 47,000 feet (14,326 m), while the Gulfstream G280 peaks at 45,000 feet (13,716 m).
A higher maximum altitude can provide smoother flights as it allows the aircraft to fly above turbulent weather conditions.
Furthermore, it can result in less air traffic, allowing for more direct routes and hence, shorter flight times.
The rate of climb for the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS is 4,310 feet per minute (1,313 meters per minute), whereas the Gulfstream G280 boasts a higher rate at 5,000 feet per minute (1,524 meters per minute).
Fuel burn per hour is another critical factor to consider.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS burns 269 gallons (1,018 liters) per hour, while the Gulfstream G280 consumes slightly more at 284 gallons (1,074 liters) per hour.
Choosing an aircraft with a lower fuel burn figure can result in significant savings and reduced impact on the environment. For instance, assuming Jet A fuel costs $6 per gallon, if both aircraft were flown for 300 hours per year, choosing the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS would save you $27,000 annually.
The range of an aircraft is a critical factor for many buyers, particularly those who frequently travel long distances.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS boasts a range of 4,000 nautical miles (7,408 kilometers), while the Gulfstream G280 falls slightly short with a range of 3,600 nautical miles (6,667 kilometers).
However, it’s important to note that these range figures represent the best-case scenario and are subject to variations based on several factors.
One such factor is the weight of the aircraft. An increase in the weight, whether due to additional passengers, cargo, or fuel, can decrease the range.
Secondly, weather conditions can significantly impact the range. Adverse weather, such as strong headwinds, can cause the aircraft to consume more fuel, thereby reducing the range.
Thirdly, the altitude at which the aircraft is flown also influences the range. While higher altitudes can offer smoother flights and potentially more direct routes, they may also result in higher fuel consumption and a reduced range.
See the range map below the view the maximum distance each aircraft can fly starting from New York City.
Ground performance, encompassing take-off and landing distances, is another crucial aspect to consider when comparing private jets.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has a take-off distance of 5,878 feet (1,791 meters) and a landing distance of 2,260 feet (689 meters).
In comparison, the Gulfstream G280 requires a shorter take-off distance of 4,750 feet (1,448 meters), while its landing distance is slightly longer at 2,720 feet (829 meters).
This is a significant difference between the two aircraft in terms of take-off distance.
The Falcon 2000LXS requiring at least 1,000 feet more runway than the G280 will likely have a real-world impact, allowing the G280 to operate in and out of airports that the Falcon 2000LXS just can’t.
A shorter take-off distance is beneficial as it allows the aircraft to operate from smaller airports with shorter runways, providing access to a wider range of destinations.
Similarly, a shorter landing distance increases safety by allowing the aircraft to stop in a shorter space after touching down, offering more flexibility in choosing landing sites.
However, these figures represent the best-case scenario, and several factors can influence the ground performance of each aircraft.
The weight of the aircraft, including fuel, passengers, and baggage, can significantly affect both take-off and landing distances.
Additionally, environmental conditions such as wind speed and direction, air temperature, and runway condition (wet or dry) also play a role.
Lastly, the altitude of the airport can affect the aircraft’s performance, with higher altitudes generally requiring longer take-off and landing distances due to the thinner air.
The interior dimensions of an aircraft significantly contribute to the comfort and experience of passengers on board.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has an interior length of 26.18 feet (7.98 meters), a width of 7.68 feet (2.34 meters), and a height of 6.17 feet (1.88 meters).
On the other hand, the Gulfstream G280 offers a longer cabin with an interior length of 32.25 feet (9.83 meters), but slightly narrower with a width of 6.92 feet (2.11 meters) and shorter with a height of 6.07 feet (1.85 meters).
A longer cabin, as seen in the Gulfstream G280, allows for more space for passengers to move around, providing extra comfort during long flights.
It can also accommodate additional seating or storage areas, enhancing the overall travel experience.
However, a wider cabin, like the one in the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS, means more elbow room for passengers, potentially offering a more relaxed and less cramped environment, especially when the aircraft is at its maximum capacity.
A taller cabin, although the difference is minimal in these two aircraft, can add to the feeling of spaciousness and provide more headroom, making movement within the cabin easier, particularly for taller passengers.
Both the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS and the Gulfstream G280 can accommodate up to 10 passengers in both their maximum and typical configurations, ensuring that all passengers enjoy the same level of comfort and luxury.
One area that is often overlooked when comparing aircraft is the cabin altitude.
A lower cabin altitude is beneficial for several reasons.
It helps to reduce the effects of hypoxia, a condition caused by a lack of oxygen that can lead to headaches, fatigue, and shortness of breath.
A lower cabin altitude can also help to minimize the impact of jet lag on long-haul flights, helping passengers to arrive at their destination feeling more refreshed.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has a maximum cabin altitude of 7,200 feet (2,195 meters), while the Gulfstream G280 offers a slightly lower maximum cabin altitude of 7,000 feet (2,134 meters).
Moreover, each aircraft can maintain a sea-level cabin up to a certain flight altitude, beyond which the cabin altitude begins to climb.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS can maintain a sea-level cabin up to an altitude of 25,300 feet (7,711 meters), while the Gulfstream G280 can maintain it up to a slightly lower altitude of 25,000 feet (7,620 meters).
Dassault Falcon 2000LXS
Inside the Falcon 2000LXS passengers are treated to peace and quiet. According to Dassault; passengers flying the 2000LXS “travel quietly, graciously, and productively”.
The interior of the 2000LXS is spacious, stylish, and quiet. The 2000LXS has a large interior for its segment and is described as being generous and luxurious in every way. No matter how long the flight is passengers will be comfortable.
Dassault has outfitted the aircraft with advanced connection technology and an intuitive cabin management system. The cabin management system is compatible with most smartphones, allowing you to control the cabin from everywhere.
The Falcon 2000LXS is 7 feet and 8 inches wide inside. This makes the cabin wider and more inviting than most of its competitors. The 2000LXS can accommodate up to 10 passengers for up to eight hours. Featuring a fully flat floor, headroom comes in at 6 feet 2 inches. Therefore, most passengers will be able to comfortably move around the cabin and stand up.
Dassault has been able to fit eighteen large windows that drench the interior in light. Windows are strategically placed next to seats in order to provide every passenger with a view. Frequent air circulation and fresh air ensure that you stay refreshed. As a result, jet lag should be reduced to a minimum on long flights.
Dassault Falcon 2000LXS
Despite being the smallest aircraft in the Gulfstream line-up it still gets all the amenities and quality you would expect from any Gulfstream.
With the option to configure the cabin to seat up to 10 passengers and space for up to five passengers to sleep.
There are two cabin layouts that offer the maximum 10-seat capacity, one which features a double-club forward seating arrangement and four seats opposite a three-seat divan (note that only the two edge seats of the divan can be used for take-off and landing). The other configuration replaces the divan with two individual seats in a single-club configuration.
The club seats can be configured into beds, along with the divan.
At the rear of the cabin, there is the fully enclosed lavatory, featuring a vacuum toilet, sink, and closet to hang garments.
Keep going further back and you will find the baggage compartment which is capable of storing 120 cubic feet of baggage, with a maximum weight limit of 1,980 lbs.
The maximum cabin altitude in the G280 is 7,000 feet – similar to many airliners – and the cabin noise level stays right around 70 dB. The lower the cabin altitude and the lower the noise levels, the less jet lag you will feel when you arrive at your final destination.
When you walk aboard the G280 you will first notice the galley which is located right opposite the main door. Standard features including cold storage, a coffee maker, an ice drawer, a hot/cold sink, a solid surface countertop, a lighted display compartment, and a large waste container.
Additionally, the galley features the Gulfstream cabin-management system (CMS), allowing passengers to control the entire cabin environment from this master panel. There is also an app available allowing passengers to configure the cabin environment, such as lighting and cabin temperature, from the comfort of their seats.
When it comes to chartering a private jet, the cost is a significant consideration.
The difference in the hourly charter price between these two aircraft is minimal.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has an estimated hourly charter cost of $5,500, whereas the Gulfstream G280 costs slightly more at $5,650 per hour.
However, these figures are base rates and the final charter cost can be influenced by several factors.
One of the key factors is the duration and distance of the flight. Longer flights tend to have a lower cost per hour as the fixed costs are spread over a longer period.
Another factor is the operational costs which include fuel, crew salaries, maintenance, and aircraft depreciation. These costs can vary depending on the location, time of year, and even the current market price of aviation fuel.
Finally, the demand for private jets can also influence the charter cost. During peak seasons or popular events, the demand for private jets increases, leading to higher charter rates.
The acquisition cost of an aircraft is a significant investment, and understanding the depreciation rates can help potential buyers make informed decisions.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has a new list price of $34,000,000, while the Gulfstream G280 has a lower list price of $25,000,000.
If you were to purchase a 2020 model of each aircraft, the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS has an estimated value of $31,000,000. This is significantly more than the estimated value of $20,500,000 for a 2020 Gulfstream G280.
Depreciation plays a crucial role in the aircraft’s value over time.
With an annual depreciation rate of 5.82%, the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS is expected to depreciate to a future value of approximately $25,896,302 in three years.
On the other hand, the Gulfstream G280, with a lower annual depreciation rate of 4.6%, is projected to have a future value of around $17,799,139 over the same period.
In terms of actual dollar amounts, the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS will lose more money over the ownership period compared to the Gulfstream G280.
Firstly, the age and condition of the aircraft directly impact its value. Older jets or those in poor condition will depreciate faster.
Secondly, the total flight hours and maintenance history can also affect depreciation. An aircraft with high flight hours or a lackluster maintenance record may depreciate more rapidly.
Lastly, market conditions, such as supply and demand, can significantly influence depreciation rates. During periods of low demand, the value of private jets may decrease more quickly.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS and the Gulfstream G280 are both impressive private jets, each offering unique strengths.
The Dassault Falcon 2000LXS can fly further, higher, and has more space in the cabin in terms of height and width.
However, the 2000LXS is more expensive to purchase and loses more money in depreciation.
Moreover, the G280 boasts a more impressive take-off distance which increases its operational capabilities.
In many scenarios, the decision will come down to ownership costs, and in many situations, the G280 makes more financial sense.