A long-range medium business jet aircraft, The Citation X is Cessna’s largest, fastest and longest range aircraft yet. The Company claims it to be the fastest civil transport in service other than the supersonic Concorde. Topping speeds of up to Mach 0.92 (527 ktas, 607 mph, 977 km/h at 41,000ft ASL (12,700meters ASL), Citation Xs have flown the equivalent of four trips to the sun. Powered by two Rolls-Royce turbofan engines, they’ve taken off and landed approximately 1 million times. And every day, their average duration in the air is the highest in the entire Citation fleet. The X (as in the Roman numeral, not the letter, and Cessna’s Model 750) has earned its distinction as one of business aviation’s busiest, best and all-time favorite aircraft. The Citation brand of business jets encompasses six distinct “families” of aircraft. Although based on the earlier Citation III, VI and VII models, the Citation X is a significantly different airplane; it utilizes a totally new wing design, engines, and features a glass cockpit.

Designing objectives behind the Citation X included transcontinental USA and trans Atlantic range in a mid size package that cruises faster than any other business jet available. This high speed cruise capability, which Cessna says is 105 to 210km/h (55 to 113kt), saving up to one hour’s flight time on transcontinental US flights, flying from Los Angeles to New York with normal wind conditions in 4 hours 10 minutes. Cessna also says the Citation X will consume less fuel than current jets on such a transcontinental flight because of its ability to cruise at high speed at high altitudes.

The development of the Citation X was first announced at the National Business Aviation Association Convention in New Orleans in October 1990, with the first prototype making its maiden flight on December 21, 1993. The first Citation X was delivered in July 1996 to golfer and long-time Cessna customer Arnold Palmer. A Citation X was the 2500th Citation to be delivered, handed over on September 10 1997. The USA’s National Aeronautics Association awarded its prestigious Collier Trophy to the Citation X design team in February 1997.

In 2010, Cessna initiated major updates of the aircraft, which includes upgraded AE3007C2 engines with new fans, Garmin G1000 flight displays with three 14 inch screens and a heads-up display. Cessna also decided that The elliptical winglets that were available as an aftermarket option on the Citation X will become standard. Also, a stretch of 38 cm will improve passenger comfort. Due to a 1.4% improvement in SFC and increased thrust, Cessna is advertizing an increase in payload of 97 kg, an increase in cruise speed at FL490 from 460 to 479 knots, and a range increase of 190 nm (352 km). First flight is expected in December 2011.


In many ways, the Citation X was considered a completely new aircraft, despite Cessna’s long history of building business jets and the number of aircraft in the Citation family. The wing, tail, tail cone, gear, and systems are designed from scratch and not based on pre-existing aircraft. The Citation X is also the first aircraft from Cessna to use a Rolls-Royce engine and fully integrated avionics. Although The Citation X has the same fuselage diameter as the Citations VI and VII; the wing attachment to the fuselage is different from the attachment in any previous Citation.
Cessna also incorporated a number of ground-breaking design features. One feature that is often first noticed is the large diameter of the engine intakes. This element, related to the high bypass ratio turbofan, reduces the noise from the engines and improves fuel efficiency. Another observable characteristic is the highly swept wing with a supercritical airfoil, used in order to increase the critical Mach number and therefore the top speed. The Citation X has 37 degrees of sweepback at the quarter chord, more than any other business jet and, among civil aircraft, second only to the Boeing 747′s 37.5 degrees. The horizontal and vertical stabilizers are also highly swept and are arranged in a T-tail configuration.

Powered controls

Cessna also included powered controls in the Citation X. The controls are powered by dual-hydraulic systems for redundancy. There are two elevators and the tailplane is all-moving for trim. The rudder is in two pieces: The upper portion is electrically powered the lower portion is hydraulically-powered. Each wing has five spoiler panels, to be used both for roll control (in addition to the ailerons) and as speed brakes. One of the chief challenges of the Citation X design was finding enough space in the wing to house all the necessary hydraulic lines. As Paul Kalberer, the chief engineer of the Citation X program, explained, the Citation X needs just as many hydraulic pumps and actuators as a Boeing aircraft, but has much less space inside the wings.


The Honeywell Primus 2000 EFIS flight director system provides the avionics system for the glass cockpit. It’s composed of five 7″x8″ CRT screens. Dual flight management systems with GPS are standard.

Elliptical Winglets

In 2008, Winglet Technology and Cessna, began flight testing epoxy/graphite elliptical winglets on a Citation X. Flight testing was nearing completion in late 2008, with FAA supplemental type certification expected in 2009. The winglets has increased range by 150 nm, lower fuel burn by 4-5%, increased hot and high performance as well as climb rate, permitting a climb to FL430 in 22 minutes, as opposed to 26 minutes without the modification. Climb to FL450 at maximum takeoff weight is possible without a step climb. Cruise speed at altitude is expected to increase by 15 knots, and maximum takeoff weight will increase by 1200 lbs (545 kg).

Cessna Citation X
Specifications: General characteristics
8-12 passengers
72 ft 4 in (22.05 m)
63 ft 7 in (19.38 m)
19 ft 2 in (5.84 m)
Wing Area
527.0 ft² (48.96 m²)
Aspect Ratio
Empty weight
21,600 lb (9,798 kg)
Max takeoff weight
36,100 lb (16,374 kg)
2× Rolls-Royce/Allison AE 3007C-1 turbofan, 6,764 lbf (30.01 kN) each
Cessna Citation X
Maximum speed
Mach 0.92 (MMO)
Cruise speed
525 knots (604 mph, 972 km/h) at 35,000 ft (10,700 m)
3,216 nmi (3,700 mi, 5,956 km)
Service ceiling
51,000 ft (15,545 m)
Rate of Climb
3,650 ft/min (18.6 m/s)
Takeoff distance
5,140 ft (1,567 m)
Landing distance
3,400 ft (1,036 m)
Fuel capacity
1,926 US gallons, 7,291 L