Dallas-Based JSX Aims To Acquire Over 300 Hybrid-Electric Aircraft with 2028 Delivery Start

JSX—which calls itself "the world's only 5-star hop-on jet service"—flies out of Dallas Love Field and offers 41 point-to-point flights across the U.S. Its agreements to acquire up to 322 Electra, Aura Aero, and Heart Aerospace hybrid-electric aircraft aim to help its goal of "leading the charge for green regional air travel."

With a goal of “leading the charge for green regional air travel,” Dallas-based premium regional air carrier JSX has announced its intent to acquire up to 332 hybrid-electric aircraft from manufacturers ElectraAura Aero, and Heart Aerospace.

JSX—which calls itself “the world’s only 5-star hop-on jet service”—flies out of Dallas Love Field and offers 41 point-to-point flights across the U.S. The public charter jet service said it has signed letters of intent to acquire up to 82 of the 9-seat Electra eSTOL aircraft with 32 firm orders and 50 options; up to 150 of the 19-seat Aura Aero Era with 50 firm orders and 100 options; and up to 100 of the 30-seat Heart Aerospace ES-30 with 50 firm orders and 50 options. 

JSX said it expects to take delivery of its first hybrid-electric aircraft in 2028, aiming to be the among the first in its category to adopt the “impactful, cutting-edge renewable energy technology.”

2023 slated to be JSX’s busiest year to date

The carrier currently operates a fleet of 48 Embraer E145 family aircraft, each configured to offer 30 seats, and employs over 1,200 crewmembers. Last year was JSX’s busiest year to date with 30,000 revenue flights, D Magazine reported recently, with CEO Alex Wilcox telling D that number is expected to grow by 65% by the end of 2023, with expected 2023 record revenue of $500 million.

Looking several years ahead, the carrier sees potential in what hybrid-electric aircraft can do for its U.S. operations. JSX currently markets its “by-the-seat” public charter air service to numerous small communities that have no other regular air service. Once the next-gen hybrid-electrics join its fleet, JSX aims to “dramatically lower the cost of its service and open new flight options at over 2,000 U.S. airports, stimulating local economies and empowering regional mobility and connectivity for communities devoid of regular air service today.”

Aiming to serve smaller communities abandoned by ‘ever larger’ airline aircraft

Co-Founder and CEO Alex WIlcox said that Tuesday’s order of hybrid-electric aircraft “exemplifies our commitment to achievable, customer-friendly, carbon-reducing solutions that will offer the lower costs essential to providing vital air service to smaller communities across the country.”

“As the network airlines order ever-larger aircraft, it’s inevitable that more and more small markets will be abandoned,” Wilcox added in a statement. “Electra, Aura Aero, and Heart Aerospace are visionary organizations that share in JSX’s commitment to serving smaller communities, working together with us to weave sustainable regional air travel back into the fabric of American commerce and freedom of movement.”

Electra can take off and land in less than 150 feet 

The Electra (seen at the top of this article) has the unique ability to take off and land in less than 150 feet at very slow speeds with batteries that recharge in-flight, eliminating the need for new ground infrastructure, JSX said. The electric Short Takeoff and Landing (eSTOL) aircraft “leverages distributed electric propulsion and blown lift as well as a small turbine-powered generator to drive eight electric motors distributed across the wing, providing high lift at low airspeed and low drag at high speed,” JSX added.

“Electra is thrilled to be a key part of JSX’s innovative vision for the future of regional air mobility,” JP Stewart, VP and general manager at Electra, said in a statement. “Our eSTOL aircraft is uniquely positioned to deliver on JSX’s commitment to provide sustainable access to small communities and large cities alike.”

Aura Aero’s Era can transport 19 passengers or 1.9 tons of freight

Rendering of the Aura Aero Era 19-seat hybrid-electric aircraft in JSX livery [Photo: Business Wire]

Aura Aero’s Era is a “brand-new eco-responsible aircraft” that’s capable of transporting 19 passengers or 1.9 tons of freight, with a flexible seating configuration, JSX said. With a range of 900 nautical miles, the Era uses all-electric propulsion for takeoff, reducing its noise footprint while minimizing environmental impact.

Jeremy Caussade, president and co-founder of Aura Aero, said his company’s low-carbon aircraft “provides the performance required for JSX to bring air connectivity to more local communities. This agreement marks a new step in our development in the USA. We’re thrilled by this new, exciting challenge.”

Heart Aerospace ES-30 can fly up to 125 miles under ‘full electric, zero-emissions power’

Rendering of the Heart Aerospace ES-30 30-seat hybrid-electric aircraft in JSX livery. [Photo: Business Wire]

The ES-30 from Heart Aerospace is a regional hybrid-electric airplane that seats 30 passengers while offering “low emissions, low noise pollution, and low operating costs on short haul routes,” JSX said—adding that the ES-30 has the flexibility to fly up to 500 miles, including 250 miles of hybrid range and up to 125 miles under full electric, zero-emissions power.

“The ES-30, with its competitive economics and green credentials, fits very well with JSX’s vision, and we see not only the opportunity to reconnect many regional routes lost over the years, but also open many more new ones,” said Simon Newitt, president and chief commercial officer at Heart Aerospace. “We believe this transformation will be good for the consumer and good for the economy, as well as for the environment.”

Sample route map of JSX air service options enabled using Aura Aero Era, Heart ES-30, and Electra eSTOL aircraft [Graphic: Business Wire]

Longtime director of aviation for city of Dallas joined JSX last year

In November 2022, Mark Duebner, the longtime director of aviation for the city of Dallas, joined JSX as vice president of corporate real estate and airport affairs

Duebner joined JSX after serving as the city of Dallas’ director of the Department of Aviation overseeing Dallas Love Field, Dallas Executive Airport, and the Dallas Vertiport. 

JSX was formerly known as JetSuiteX before its rebranding in 2019. The company relocated from Orange County, California, to Dallas in 2018. 

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