Embraer Legacy 600: Buyer’s and Investor’s Guide


By Alex Andrews 

What is it?

Since it entered the business jet market in 2001, Embraer’s Legacy aircraft have quietly built up a very strong reputation. The 175+ selling Legacy 600, which is the first in the series, has been a strong part of this success. The aircraft is based on the ERJ-135, 37-seat regional airliner, and was first certified in 1999.

“The cabins are the same size as Gulfstreams, but with much lower costs,” says Bob Sherry, president of ExcelAire, who compares the difference between the two manufacturers to the difference between Rolls-Royce and Cadillac.

“Embraer is a comparatively new manufacturer on the block, says Patrick Margetson-Rushmore, co-founder and CEO of London Executive Aviation. “One of the attractions of the Legacy 600 is its reliability. We have over eight Legacies in our fleet and out dispatch rate is something like 99 per cent.”

In 2010, Embraer introduced the Legacy 650, a new variant which can fly around 500 nautical miles further than the Legacy 600.


Embraer built the Legacy 600 with a close eye on the US market. As such, it is capable of flying up to 13 passengers (although 10 may be more comfortable) across the US.

It can fly 3,250 nm at a speed of nearly 490 mph. This translates to around 6.5 hours of flying time, making it possible to cross the Atlantic Ocean without any stops (but only just).

“Range-wise, it is fantastic for anything in Europe,” says Oliver Stone, founder of Colibri Aircraft.

The Legacy 600 can fly up to 41,000 ft and needs 5,550 ft (1,692 m) to take off and 2,680 ft (817 m) for landing. It is powered by two Rolls-Royce AE3007A-1E engines, each rated at 8,100 lb of thrust.

The cockpit is fitted with a Honeywell Primus Elite avionics suite as standard.


A major advantage of the Legacy 600 for passengers is that the roomy cabin can be split into three living spaces; passengers can sit and watch TV or work in an office space as well as dining in style. The cabin measures 1,413 cubic ft and is 6 ft high, 42 ft long and almost 7 ft wide, which is significantly larger than its competitors in the super-mid-size weight class.

“You can sit eight people in the front of the cabin and the five people in the back,” says Stone. “For a lot of customers, the adults will be in the front section and they throw the kids in the back on the couch with a couple of movies.”

Embraer boasts that the Legacy 600 has the largest inflight accessible baggage compartment in its class with 240 cubic ft of baggage space, as well as the largest lavatory (owners have an option for a second lavatory at the front of the cabin).

The full galley at the front of the aircraft typically has a bar, oven and microwave.

The cabin is usually fitted with two DVD players, flat screen monitors and seats that fully recline. Newer models will likely include a satellite phone and high-speed Wi-Fi connectivity.


The Legacy 600 has two selling points: its size and its value. When you’re on board a Legacy 600, you’ll enjoy all of the comfort and privacy of a premium private jet, but with a much more enticing price tag (and if you’re really chasing a bargain, it’s possible to pick up a pre-owned model for less than $7 million).

The Legacy 600’s airliner heritage means it can fly well in excess of 400 hours a year and does not tend to require the same frequency of maintenance inspections as other business jets.

The Legacy 600 is a popular aircraft for charter operators, so if you’re looking to lower the operating costs further, you can charter the aircraft to recoup some of your costs (although don’t expect to make a profit).

Margetson-Rushmore says: “We do a lot of band tours. What it does for the band is it saves them an immense amount of time; they can go directly to the venue location, go to a hotel, sleep and perform the following evening.”

The catch is that the Legacy 600 offers half the range of a similarly sized Gulfstream and over longer distances, its ability to reach the same speeds may start to become noticeable for people in a hurry.

The company currently has 13 authorised maintenance facilities in the US, another three in Europe and an additional production plant in Florida.

If you are thinking of buying a pre-owned Legacy 600, you’ll want to thoroughly inspect the aircraft before purchase.

“As with all aircraft, corrosion does occur on the Legacy, but we have not come across any hotspots for corrosion that we find on other types,” says Stone.

“On the whole, the Legacy is really tough and even in aircraft that have been stored for prolonged periods we see exemplary flight performance and few defects on acceptance flights.”   

Hard facts

Range: 3,740 mi/6,019 km/3,250 nm
Typical passengers: Up to 13
Typical crew: 3 (including cabin attendant)
Maximum speed: 528 mph/850 kmph/mach 0.80

Competitor aircraft: Bombardier Challenger 300, Challenger 350, Challenger 605, Dassault Falcon 2000DX/EX, Dassault Falcon 2000EX EASy, Gulfstream G200/G280/G350/G450

Total cost for fully fitted new jet: $27.5 million
Total cost for pre-owned jet: $7-$13 million

First delivery: 2002
World fleet: 175

Our verdict

For: No other business jet offers the same capabilities of the Legacy 600 for less than $30 million. Even compared with other more expensive super-mid-size jets, the Legacy 600 offers significantly more space both in the cabin and the hold.

Its ability to comfortably carry large groups of people (and their baggage) on journeys up to five or six hours has made the Legacy 600 a popular choice for corporates, families and touring rock bands.

Against: If you want fly across the Atlantic or from London to Dubai, for example, you’re really going to push the Legacy 600’s range to its limits, meaning that a short fuel stop may be advisable.

Of course, this adds to journey time and undermines much of the reason why you bought a business jet in the first place. It’s hard to dispute that the Legacy 600 offers exceptional value in its weight class, but if your itinerary includes regular long-haul flights, you might be better investing more on an aircraft with additional range.


(2015, January 26). Embraer Legacy 600: Buyer's and Investor's Guide. Corporate Jet Investor. Retrieved January 26, 2015, from www.corporatejetinvestor.com.