Bombardier designed the original Challenger 601 with the primary goal of passenger comfort. It is unusually wide-bodied with its 8.2 foot wide cabin, yet it has transcontinental range, and is able to complete nonstop flights between almost any two cities in the United States. The 601 series has improved immensely over the 600, with a more reliable flight system and increased maintainability. The 601-1A iteration signifies the use of General Electric CF43-1A engines and drag reducing winglets.
As previously mentioned, the cabin of this private jet is uncharacteristically large. Passengers enjoy a quiet interior and well-lit cabin. It usually has a seating configuration that comfortably holds between eight and twelve people, but can be configured to carry as many as nineteen.
While the Challenger 601 is a private jet well-suited for frequent cross-country trips under rigorous conditions, it fails to match the performance capabilities of the upgraded 601-1A. Refinements like a more advanced engine and the addition of winglets make the aircraft capable of transoceanic range while maintaining ample cabin space for which its predecessor is known.