Heavy Jets
Private Jets

Heavy Jets: A List of the Best Large Cabin Private Aircraft

By Devon Wood
January 4, 20247 minutes
A Dassault 7X private jet with its gear down prior to landing.

In recent years, private aviation has seen a significant increase in demand for bigger, faster, more capable aircraft. As a result, manufacturers have introduced an entirely new category of private jets that are even heftier than those in the super-mid size class.

In this article, we’ll review what makes a private aircraft a heavy jet, and share the 11 most prominent heavy jet models out there today.

What is a Heavy Jet?

A heavy jet, also referred to as a "large cabin” jet, is a classification reserved for private jets with the biggest dimensions and weights. These jets are most often renowned for their spacious cabins, extended flight ranges, and exceptional performance capabilities.

These large cabin jets are popular choices for high-profile individuals, corporate organizations, and governmental agencies, catering to those who prefer long-range, high-capacity travel in a rather extravagant environment.

The History of Heavy Jets

A Dassault Falcon 900 photographed in 1989 parked at an airport.

The early stages of heavy (large cabin) private jet production began in the 1970s when manufacturers recognized the need for more spacious and capable aircraft. In 1973, the Grumman Gulfstream II made its debut, marking an early milestone in the heavy private jet category. This was followed by the Gulfstream III, which further solidified Gulfstream's reputation for creating large, long-range private jets

The 1990s witnessed the introduction of the Bombardier Global Express, setting new standards for range and luxury. This era also saw the emergence of Dassault's Falcon 900, contributing to the diversity of heavy private jet offerings. The 2000s brought forth the Gulfstream G550, which became a benchmark for performance and comfort.

Today, the heavy private jet market is characterized by fierce competition among industry leaders such as Gulfstream, Bombardier, and Dassault. The next generation of heavy jets models is currently in production, and they are all set to enter the market within the next few years.

Typically, “heavy jet” refers to traditional business jets, and omits converted commercial airliners like Boeing Business Jets. This is because these jets are significantly bigger than standard private aircraft, and therefore should be in a class of their own.

What Makes a Private Jet a Heavy Jet?

While there are no set specifications for what defines a “heavy jet”,  here are some characteristics that most of these aircraft share:

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 12- 20 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: (10- 12 flight hours) 5,700- 7,700 nmi
  • 🛩️ Length: 100- 120 ft (30- 36 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 40- 50 ft (12- 15 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 90,000- 120,000 lbs (40,000- 55,000 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $50- 75 million

Heavy jets also have a number of upscale amenities onboard, including:

  • 🥂 Galleys with full catering services
  • 🍽 Dining tables that comfortably seat 4-6 guests
  • 📺 Entertainment systems such as TVs, surround sound, and high-speed Wi-Fi
  • 📞 Conference rooms with large meeting tables and audiovisual equipment

  • 🚻 Enclosed lavatories complete with toilets, vanities, and showers
  • 🛏 Private suites containing twin, full, and even queen beds

These large cabins are  the pinnacle of private aviation excellence. Furthermore, expect much of the interior design to feature premium materials and finishes, accompanied by high-end artwork and fancy accessories. All in all, heavy jets present the most aesthetically pleasing and luxurious ambiances in the skies!

Now, let’s take a look at all the heavy jet manufacturers and their most notable heavy jet models.

Bombardier Heavy Jets

Renowned for their groundbreaking Global series, Bombardier crafts large cabin private aircraft that seamlessly blend cutting-edge technology with a legacy of meticulous engineering.

Bombardier Global 5500

A Bombardier Global 5500 with blue and red accent stripes taxiing on the tarmac.

A smaller variant in the “Global” series, the 5500 is a more recent upgrade to the 5000 model, which was launched in 2002. While it shares much of the size specs of its predecessor, the 5500 boasts upgraded avionics, engines, and modern interiors. Even at its compressed size in the Global line, this heavy jet still has an impressive max takeoff weight at a whopping 92,500 lb (41,950 kg).

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 16  passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 5,700 nmi (10,500 km) 
  • 🛩️ Length: 96 ft 10 in (29.5 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 40 ft 9 in (12.41 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 92,500 lbs (41,950 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $46 million

Bombardier Global 6500

A Bombardier branded Global 6500

The Bombardier Global 6500 boasts a production history marked by continuous innovation. Measuring just under 100 feet (30 meters) long, this heavy jet provides a roomy cabin designed for optimal comfort during long-haul journeys.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 17  passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 6,600 nmi (12,200 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 99 ft 5 in (30.3 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 43 ft 3 in (13.18 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 99,500 lbs (45,100 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $53 million

Bombardier Global 7500

A Bombardier Global 7500 flying over snowy mountain tops.

Credit: Bombardier

The Bombardier Global 7500 is a testament to Bombardier's commitment to pushing the boundaries of private aviation innovation. One of the longest range private jets (at 7,700 nautical miles!), the 7500's production history is synonymous with setting new standards for performance. Its ultra-long range and spacious cabin make it an unparalleled choice for those who prioritize both luxury and efficiency.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 19 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 7,700 nmi (14,200 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 111 ft (34 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 54 ft (16.5 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 115,000 lbs (52,100 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $75 million

Gulfstream Heavy Jets

From their earliest heavy business jet airplanes to the most modern large cabin aircraft, Gulfstream's production history is synonymous with delivering unparalleled performance and comfort.

Gulfstream V

A Gulfstream V jet with registration HB-JES.

Source: Ian Gratton

The Gulfstream V, a pioneer in the heavy jet category, revolutionized long-range travel. With a wingspan of 93 feet (28.5 meters), this iconic jet has consistently delivered exceptional performance and smooth cruising. Its production history reflects Gulfstream's dedication to combining speed with an expansive and comfortable cabin.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 14 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 6,500 nmi (12,000 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 96 ft (29.5 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 44 feet (13.3 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 90,500 lbs (41,050 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $10 million

Gulfstream G650/ G650ER

A white Swiss Gulfstream G650ER with registration HB-IVJ.

The Gulfstream G650 and G650ER represent the pinnacle of Gulfstream's engineering prowess. With a production history marked by continuous refinement,  these models provide ultralong range for intercontinental flights. The meticulously designed cabin ensures an unparalleled flying experience, with amazing soundproofing and state-of-the-art avionics.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 19 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 7,500 nmi (13,900 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 99 ft (30.40 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 46 ft (14.3 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 103,600 lbs (47,000 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $61 million

Gulfstream G700

The Gulfstream G700, a recent addition to Gulfstream's portfolio, showcases the manufacturer's commitment to innovation. With a max takeoff weight of [specific weight] and an impressive ceiling, the G700 offers an expansive and customizable cabin, setting new standards for heavy jets in the private aviation sector.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 19 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 7,500 nmi (13,900 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 109 ft (33.5 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 57 ft (17.3 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 107,600 lbs (48,800 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $75 million

Dassault Heavy Jets

Most known for their trijet aircraft, Dassault’s lineup is a staple of the heavy corporate jet market. The French manufacturer’s large cabin heavy jet models include the Falcon 900, 7X, and all-new 8X.

Dassault Falcon 900LX

Dassault's Falcon 900 series has a rich production history marked by elegance and efficiency. With a max speed of Mach .89, the Falcon 900 delivers exceptional range and a luxurious flying experience. 

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 14 passengers
  • ⛽ Range:  4,000 nmi (7,400 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 66 ft (20.2 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 33 ft (10.1 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 49,000 lbs (22,200 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $44 million

Dassault Falcon 7X

A Dassault Falcon 7X owned by Ovation about to land on the runway

The Falcon 7X, a marvel in private aviation, carries on Dassault's iconic three engine design. The trijet is equipped with three rear-mounted Pratt & Whitney PW307A turbofan engines, producing a grand total of 19,000 pounds of thrust. Overall, the 7X is a noticeable step up from its predecessors in the manufacturer’s lineup. 

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 16 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 5,950 nmi (11,000 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 76 ft (23.3 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 39 ft (11.9 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 70,000 lbs (31,750 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $54 million

Dassault Falcon 8X

The Falcon 8X is a slightly larger version of the 7X. With an updated build and more modern equipment, the 8X provides minor improvements across the board in terms of size and performance.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 16 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 6,450 nmi (11,945 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 80 ft (24.4 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 42 ft (13 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 73,000 lbs (33,100 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $56 million

Embraer Heavy Jets

Serving both commercial and private aviation customers, Embraer produces a couple aircraft on the heavy jet list.

Embraer Legacy 650E

A grey and dark blue Embraer Legacy 650E with its gear down.

Embraer's Legacy 650E, with a production history reflecting sleek design and advanced engineering, provides an ideal blend of style and performance. Originally produced in 2002 as the Legacy 600, the newer 650 heavy jet was launched in 2011, with sales halting in 2020. Many private aviation companies offer the Embraer Legacy business jets for charter flights. 

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 14 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 3,900 nmi (7,200 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 86 ft (26.3 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 49 ft (15 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 53,500 lbs (24,300 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $20 million

Embraer Lineage 1000E

The Embraer Lineage 1000E is truly an ultra-large business jet. Its interior can be designed to have up to five sections, including an optional bedroom, full bathroom, and a walk-in cargo area. Only 31 units were planned for production over the course of about 13 years (with just 28 being delivered). If you’re looking for the largest heavy jet by square footage, the Lineage is the clear winner.

  • 💺 Passenger capacity: 19 passengers
  • ⛽ Range: 4,600 nmi (8,500 km)
  • 🛩️ Length: 118 ft (36.2 m)
  • 🛩️ Cabin Length: 84 ft (25.7 m)
  • 🛫 Max Takeoff Weight: 120,100 lbs (54,500 kg)
  • 🏷 Price: $53 million

Advantages of Heavy Jets

Extended Range: Heavy jets revolutionize global connectivity with their exceptional extended range capabilities. Engineered for seamless intercontinental and transoceanic travel, these aircraft eliminate the need for layovers, providing a direct and time-efficient connection between distant locations. For businesses and entities with global operations, the extended range of heavy jets becomes a strategic asset, facilitating swift and direct access to any destination.
Spacious Interiors: Crafted with meticulous attention to design and comfort, the spacious interiors of heavy jets set a new standard for luxury in the skies. Beyond generous square footage, these cabins feature multiple dedicated spaces for work or relaxation. The emphasis on quality furnishings, premium materials, and an overall ambiance transforms the journey into an experience marked by unparalleled comfort and style.
Luxurious Amenities: Elevating the travel experience to unprecedented heights, heavy jets boast a plethora of luxurious amenities. Fully enclosed suites, showers, in-flight entertainment systems, premium furnishings, and meticulous attention to detail collectively contribute to an environment that redefines opulence at 40,000 feet.

Disadvantages of Heavy Jets

While heavy jets are extremely spacious and can travel impressively far distances, they don’t come without a few disadvantages.

Infrastructure Requirements: The sheer size and weight of a heavy jet means that heavy jets require longer runways for takeoff and landing. Therefore, some large cabin private jets may not be able to access smaller regional or local airports. 
Expensive Operating Costs: Heavy jets are much more expensive to own, lease, or charter. This is due to higher operating costs including fuel, maintenance, crew salaries, and hangar/parking costs. 
Higher Costs: If you are looking to buy, the purchase price of heavy jets is significantly higher than that of smaller aircraft. This initial investment can be a barrier for individuals or companies entering the private jet market. Another disadvantage of heavy jets is they are much more expensive to own, lease, or charter. This is due to higher operating costs including fuel, maintenance, crew salaries, and hangar space. 
2023 WebFlite. All rights reserved.