Bargain Buys in the Light Jet Category

By James Becker, Accredited Senior Appraiser and Mike Fischer – Aircraft Research Manager


Are you considering purchasing a light jet? The light jet category is comprised of aircraft suitable for short or mid-range operations, with efficiency and low cost of entry as key advantages over larger aircraft. We have identified three aircraft that we consider to be bargain buys in this category. These airframes can be purchased for a fraction of their MSRP cost new. Having Elliott Jets on your side in these uncertain times will pay dividends and provide needed peace of mind.

# 3 – Beechcraft Premier 1A

Introduced as an upgrade to the Premier I in 2006, the Premier 1A combined state of the art avionics with cutting edge composite technology with its carbon fiber fuselage. In fact, it was the first business jet to use this technology. With its Williams FJ44-2A engines producing 2,300 lbs of thrust, the Premier 1A can cruise 1,380 nm at 361kts.

Produced from 2006 to 2012, 157 examples were made, with 25-30 units currently for sale. Aircraft Bluebook value for a 2010 Premier 1A is $1,900,000, which is 28.7% of the original $6,600,000 MSRP. There were enough airframes produced to ensure support and parts availability.

#2 Bombardier Lear 40 XR

The Lear 40XR was produced from 2005 to 2012, and was an upgrade to the original Lear 40. The primary improvement of the XR is its upgraded Honeywell TFE731-20BR engines. While rated at the same thrust as the Lear 40, this engine upgrade improved the high-hot capability, and provides better fuel efficiency, which increased the range. This aircraft has also enjoyed a successful presence in fractional programs.

At any given time there are usually 10 to 15 units for sale. With a MSRP of $10,605,000 in 2010, the Aircraft Bluebook lists the average price for a 2010 model at just $2,600,000, which is only 24.5% of its original value. Although there were only 92 units produced, this aircraft, although not currently in production, shares many of its parts and components with the Lear 45, 45XR, and Lear 75 Liberty, and is still very well supported.

#1 Hawker 400XP

The Hawker 400XP can trace its roots directly to the Mitsubishi MU 300 Diamond that was introduced in 1982. The Hawker 400XP, which was introduced in 2003, is the latest and greatest incarnation of this platform. The Beechjet, as all of these are commonly referred to, has always been known for its cabin comfort and speed. This aircraft can carry six to eight passengers, and cruise over 400 kts. Furthermore, unlike its rivals, the maintenance schedule is largely hourly based, which makes the prefect choice for a low utilization operator. Although engine overhaul pricing has been a concern, there are now flat-rate overhaul options and aftermarket exchange programs that can be used to control expenses.

In 2010, the last year of production, this aircraft had a MSPR of $7,585,000. Currently the Aircraft Bluebook lists the average value for a 2010 model at $1,800,000, which is only 23.7% of its original price. Availability of used units are plentiful, with 20-30 aircraft available at any given time. With over 500 examples of the 400A and 400XP produced, parts availability and support is excellent. There is also a Garmin G5000 suite available to make this aircraft state of the art for many years to come.

Wrap Up

If you’d like to talk about finding the right light jet for your mission, contact or call 844.937.5387. You can also request a free valuation of your aircraft here. Make sure to sign up for our mailing list to receive other tips on how to find the best bargains in used jet markets.

About James Becker

Jim Becker has been an aircraft analyst for 27 years. He holds an F.A.A. Airframe & Power Plant Mechanic license and is a graduate of the Aviation Institute at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. He is an Accredited Senior Appraiser with the American Society of Appraisers. James has an extensive knowledge of the aircraft market and has tracked and analyzed thousands of aircraft transactions. Under his Aircraft Specific designation with the American Society of Appraisers, James specializes in developing current and projected market values for used reciprocating engine aircraft and turbine-powered aircraft, including corporate, commuter and private applications of airplanes and helicopters as well as all types of airline equipment. James is based in Elliott Aviation’s Des Moines Iowa facility.

About Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer joined Elliott Jets in 2018 as a market analyst. He is a graduate of Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. With his combination of business, accounting and banking industry background, along with his passion for aviation, Mike provides trusted and reliable valuations of numerous business jets and turbo props. Fischer’s expertise includes Phenom, Hawker, Learjet, Challenger, Citation, Premier and most single-engine turbo prop markets. A third generation pilot, he holds multi-engine, commercial and instrument ratings. Mike is based out of Elliott Aviation’s Eden Prairie, Minnesota facility.