What is the lightest commercial jetliner out there? I was thinking of something like a Embraer E170.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Does "commercial jetliner" mean a turbojet or turbofan aircraft in current use for scheduled passenger flights? $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Jun 1, 2019 at 22:12
  • $\begingroup$ @Pondlife: Is there something else it would mean? $\endgroup$
    – Vikki
    Jun 1, 2019 at 23:30
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    $\begingroup$ @Sean I don't know, hence the question :-) Especially if you don't know much about aviation, a "jet" could be almost anything. I once saw an article in Indian English that referred to a pilot "hovering" over Delhi in "a jet". She was actually flying a C150. $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Jun 1, 2019 at 23:36
  • $\begingroup$ The smallest jet used in scheduled airline service that I am aware of is the Beechjet, but the service was stopped sometime last year, I believe. $\endgroup$
    – J Walters
    Jun 4, 2019 at 2:18
  • $\begingroup$ Remember that even very small aircraft can be, and are, used for commercial flights. One example would be the Britten-Norman BN-2 Islander, used on the shortest commercial flight in the world between the Scottish Islands of Westray and Papa Westray, a distance of 2.7 km. $\endgroup$ Dec 31, 2020 at 18:16

3 Answers 3


I assume that you want to only compare turbofan-powered aircraft, and exclude aircraft designed to be used as private jets.

In that case, the lightest would be Dornier 328 Jet with a basic operating empty weight of 9200kg, and the next would be Embraer 135 measuring 11402 kg.

  • $\begingroup$ The 328Jet was really hurt by the low service ceiling of 35000 and the low cruise speeds of just over 400kt. They were often forced down below 30000 ft on busy routes because they interfered with spacing, being overtaken by other jets. $\endgroup$
    – John K
    Jun 2, 2019 at 4:57
  • $\begingroup$ Dornier made a 328 turboprop, then the jet version, shame they could not get a bit more thrust into it, not enough $$$ per flight with only 35 passengers. Just not as efficient as a larger aircraft, but I would look into more modern fans. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2019 at 17:43

Do you count turboprop engines as jets? In that case, the lightest might be the Britten-Norman BN-2T, with an operating empty weight of 1667kg and a maximum take-off-weight of 3175 kg.


It depends on what you mean by ‘jetliner’. By that term I would have to define it as a turbojet powered aircraft which holds a transport category type certificate. A Dornier 328Jet with an OEW of 9420kg would be a good choice. If you consider jets used for commuter operations, a Dassault Falcon 10 at 4400 kg, or an Aerospatsiale Corvette at 3510 kg would be a good choice.


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