CSeries range even better than Bombardier revealed

June 16, 2015, Paris Air Show: Bombardier yesterday detailed the performance figures of its new CS100 and CS300 mainline jets, revealing more detailed numbers than it disclosed Sunday during a preview. We have looked at these numbers and found that even these numbers are conservative.

Rob Dewar, VP of the CSeries, Sunday disclosed better fuel economics, better payload and better range than the 2,950nm advertised when the program was launched.

The effect of the improvements means CS300 now has a standard range with full passengers and luggage of 3,300nm and the CS100 3,100nm. BBD uses 102 kilos/225 lbm for passengers with bags in its calculations, at the request of its launch customer, Lufthansa Group (Swiss Airlines). Had Bombardier used the weight standards for passengers and baggage that is common in the industry, 210lb or 95kg, the range of the CS100 would have been 3,300nm and the CS300 range would have been 3,500nm, according to our calculations.

LNC’s Bjorn Fehrm, an aerospace engineer, provides some commentary about the CSeries construction.

This gives CSeries unrestricted US trans-con capability on the Miami-Seattle route, the longest within the continental United States, and makes London City Airport to the US well within reach.

Runway takeoff length for CS100 is 4,800 ft at sea level and a full load and 6,200 ft for CS300.

The last time a mainline jet exceeded specifications at entry into service was the Boeing 777-300ER, by a few percentage points. Before that it was the Boeing 727-100, which came in 10% better on fuel economy.

72 Comments on “CSeries range even better than Bombardier revealed

  1. “The last time a mainline, single-aisle jet exceeded specifications at entry into service was the Boeing 777-300ER”

    Really? Was that 6+6 seating? 😀 😛

    Could you also put a factor of 5% reduction in cruise fuel consumption (split engine and aero if you have that fidelity) into your model to see what the range comes out at please? Don’t quite have time to plug into my Breguet spreadsheet!

    • 5% fuel improvement should add at least another 170 nm/300 kms to the range bringing it to 3,670nm. Nice.

  2. The last time a mainline, single-aisle jet exceeded specifications at entry into service was the Boeing 777-300ER ??

  3. I love all the people who hate this plane.

    It is delivering on its promise and better…. Tell me an frame from Airbus or Boeing in the last 30 years that have done that.

      • Agree that the Powerplant is a contributor too. But the 787 and A350 both have advanced plants as well….

  4. One thing about London City airport, its not the range as such that is a problem for British Airways A318 to New York, its takeoff distance.

    • Takeoff distance of the CS100 at mtow is 4800 ft, LCY runway lenght is 5000 ft, so no problem here, try again.

      • Not according to my figures 1199ft, according to Airport-technology.com

        That converts to 3933 ft.
        You are thinking of maximum overall dimensions.

        This may be useful for LCY
        TORA 1199m

        TODA 1319-1385 depending on which direction

        TORA=Takeoff Run Available

        TODA=Takeoff Distance Available

        ASDA=Accelerate-Stop Distance Available

        LDA=Landing Distance Available

          • I jumped in too early, as a closer look at Bombardiers numbers for likely max range figures for both LCY and London Gatwick shows this.
            LCY 1700nm
            LGW 2950nm
            The short runway at LCY knocks off 1250nm range for CS100.

            The improved numbers would increase the totals, but the shortfall remain.
            The actual range from LCY is still outstanding, as you can fly non stop to Tehran. But non stop to JFK westbound, even in low density, could still be an issue ?

          • I don’t know where you get your numbers from or how you make your calculations but it’s the first time I hear someone put the CS100 LCY-JFK connection in doubt. BA already operates the A318 on that route and requires a fuel-stop in Shannon only when flying westbound. But the number of seats is necessarily limited. I don’t know how many seats the CS100 would have on that route but because of its short-field performances and range there should be no problem at all for the CS100. You have to keep in mind that it was designed with that kind of performance in mind: short runways, hot weather and high altitude operations. Only in extreme conditions would the number of seats have to be trimmed down. But on the LCY-JFK connection it will certainly carry more passengers than BA’s A318. And we will soon find out how many exactly. Only BA’s Concorde would offer a better deal between those two great cities. But that’s history now.

          • All those numbers are for a standard load of passengers, 110 in the old figures. If I am not mistaken BA has a maximum load of approximately 30 passengers on its A318 in service at LCY. Whatever that number is the CS100 should take quite a few more and will not need to stop in Shannon on its way to New York. The fact of the matter is that the A318 has an inferior range compared to the CSeries and is much heavier. Yet it flies out of LCY. And so will the CS100.

  5. The fact is Mr Leahy vow to crush the CSeries, didn’t want to do the same mistake Boeing made when the A320 entered the market in the 80. The CSeries force Airbus to rush into building the Neo which is a success. This will create thousands of jobs in many parts of europe and north america. It is also important to mention that the A319 and 737-700 were models that were no longer efficient because of the CS300. Airbus move was to promote the 160-200 A320Neo as the best and most efficient single aisle plane and make the market believe that any plane in the 100-160 seats is no longer needed. Airlines such as Qatar,Air Aisia and Lion Air to name a few benefited from having a third player in order to have important discount when choosing the A320Neo or 737-8 Max. The CSeries with greater range and more payload validated, will generate more sales in the near futur but never in the range of A and B and is good thing for jobs in Canada.

  6. Leeham: “We have looked at these numbers and found that even these numbers are conservative.”

    They will look even more conservative when the first PIPs will be incorporated later on. Bombardier is already announcing an additional 5% improvement. So this can only make this extraordinary aircraft even better.

    Leeham: Had Bombardier used the weight standards for passengers and baggage that is common in the industry, 210lb or 95kg, the range of the CS100 would have been 3,300nm and the CS300 range would have been 3,500nm, according to our calculations.

    The range discrepancy in favour of the CS300 can be explained by the fact that the latter benefitted from lessons learned on the CS100, and if I understood correctly what Rob Dewar was saying the better performances of the CS300 will be transferred back to the CS100 later on. So they might share similar performances in the future, like it was originally planned when the CSeries was launched in 2008.

    Now the Big Question: How will Airbus and Boeing respond to the invasion of their territory by this little bugger?

    • Simply by significantly discounting the A319NEO/737MAX-7, their production rate and learning allow it. Their can also exploit their well built customer base. I pretty sure that Airbus and Boeing can sell their aircraft at zero margin in order to evict Bombardier on this segment.

      • Maybe they can, but they also are suffering from massive cost over runs on 787, A380, and A400. Let alone the need to fund 380 NEO, 777X. And if they DO succeed in crushing Cseries, chances are the Cseries will be acquired by COMAC and they will have a world class plane with which to take on Boeing and Airbus a full generation earlier then without. With unlimited Chinese capital the A320 and 737 will be GONE!!!

        • The A380 will be cash positive by the end of this year and Airbus is not in a rush to develop the A380NEO. The A350 is cash negative right now but will be cash positive in 2019. Because of the huge production rate, Airbus can reduce price for the A320NEO. For the A400M, it is a military program.

          For Boeing, the situation is much worse. The 777X will probably consume cash until 2024 and the 787-9 and -10 are still cash negative for some time.

          Personally, I think that in an “ideal world” Boeing and Airbus should just left this segment (100-150PAX STD) to Bombardier and move to an upper segment (150-250 PAX SRD). Their are pushing the 737MAX and the A320NEO to their limits in term of range and capacity. Just develop something a little bit bigger (757-200 as an upper limit) and a MOM (something between the 757-300 and 767-200). But, of course, world doesn’t work like that.

          • A380 cash positive? I hope you meaning cash positive per aircraft and not per program.

            The tail number at which A380 program will break even is quite faaar away, they probably know they will never reach it….

    • Yes… Boeing and Airbus will use cash to try and eliminate the competition they do not want another player… They cannot do much about the Comac as that is sponsored and bankrolled by the Chinese Government. Bombardier regardless of their outstanding product is in for a tough fight.

  7. @ Jacques Xing

    “Personally, I think that in an “ideal world” Boeing and Airbus should just left this segment (100-150PAX STD) to Bombardier and move to an upper segment (150-250 PAX SRD). Their are pushing the 737MAX and the A320NEO to their limits in term of range and capacity. Just develop something a little bit bigger (757-200 as an upper limit) and a MOM (something between the 757-300 and 767-200).”

    The situation at Boeing and Airbus are different from one another. And not just financially. Both companies are extremely powerful but the long term perspective looks better at Airbus than Boeing because of they have different accounting systems. And this is important even for the technology itself because without money you cannot develop new products. Which brings me to the A320 and 737.

    The A320 is in a better position than the 737. The 737-9 canot compete with the A321neo and that segment is quite lucrative. Even the 737-8 will be struggling in the coming years against the A320neo because of its inferior engines. Below these two segments the market already belongs to the C Series. But the situation will change dramatically when the CS500 will be introduced. If we extrapolate the performances of the CS300 to the CS500 we can clearly see the challenge for Airbus and Boeing. The CSeries already makes the A320 look a bit dated and it makes the 737 look like a museum piece. I don’t think Boeing has much of a choice because the 737 is now on the list of endangered species. It will have to be abandoned sooner than later.

    In the last few years I have tried to promote the idea that the smallest variant of the 737 Replacement should start at the level of the 737-8 and move up into the A321 territory while trying to offer an economical replacement for the 757. Incidentally that is why I have stayed away from the MOM debate. For in my view it is much more urgent to respond to the neo and CSeries. And by bringing the 737 Replacement to the upper limit of the single-aisle potential Boeing would cover a critical segment and would inflict maximum damage to Airbus while keeping Bombardier at bay.

    • The 737 Replacement could have three variants:

      737R-8000 as a replacement for the 737-8.
      737R-9000 as a direct competitor for the A321neo
      737R-1000 as a 200+ passengers.

      The design of the 737R would be optimized around the 737R-9000. The fuselage could be wider than the A320’s in order to offer a very wide single aisle to facilitate entry and exit, while at the same time offering wider seats to compensate for the reduced pitch required by the single-aisle design. It could also have large 787 windows. And it would be a great opportunity for Boeing to get rid of the Wright Brothers style of yoke. The newer side-stick models can follow the motion of the flight controls and they have soft-stops incorporated in the yoke travel, all in accordance with Boeing’s philosophy.

    • Problem there is – the bulk of the market is still 737-8 /A320.

      Do you really want to have your “shrink” occupying that space? (The shrink always being the least efficient of your family.)

      • Yes but everyone says the market is moving up. The reason why the market is still the 737-8/A320 is because there is nothing else available. The same reasoning applies to the market below 150 seats. The only reason there are no buyers there is because until the C Series there was no good airplane available.

        • Sorry, I’ll rephrase that:

          The bulk of neo/max sales is still A320/B737-8 rather than A321/737-9.

          So even 10 years down the line, it’s still centred around 150-160 passengers (nominal 2-class).

          • Good point. But if what people say is true the trend could keep moving up in the coming years. But I don’t really know. All I know is that below the 737-8 there is the C Series and above it there is the A321neo. It’s not looking good for the future and something will have to be done. Or let me rephrase this: something should have been done a while ago.

            The 737 Replacement could indeed start a little lower than the 737-8 segment but not by much. I believe Boeing should concentrate on larger variants in each segment and offer something slightly bigger than the A321 at the upper end. Close enough to be almost a 757 Replacement, at least in terms of range, if not capacity.

            We are definitely at a turning point in the single-aisle market. But so many frames have been sold on both side of the Atlantic that people don’t see very well what is developing right now. Clearly there is a third player coming in and both Airbus and Boeing will have to adapt. In that regard A is in a better position than B.

            It’s too bad Bombardier did not retain the original name: Canadair. This way we could talk about A, B and C.

  8. Well I think in all reality the 737 is a museum piece!

    Nice piece of course, well done, still should have been replaced a generation ago. Ahhh well.

    • I can understand that Boeing wanted to benefit from the fuselage’s grand-father clause for as long as possible, but with the MAX they pushed their luck a little too far. In a war plane pilots often fall victim of a phenomenon called target fascination, in which case they concentrate of the the plane they are chasing (Airbus) and forget the enemy behind (Bombardier).

      • More like forward thinking, in that they used 6 abreast seating for short haul.
        Douglas went down to 5 abreast as did Caravelle and BAC111.

        The mistake they made was to purposely have a low ground clearance to allow manual handling of baggage. They have made the undercarriage slightly taller since but are caught by a too small fan diameter, and not enough tail clearance to lengthen the fuselage to be competitive.

        • The 737 fuselage is a carry over from the 707 fuselage. The latter was also very low to the ground and when time came to stretch it (707-500) they found that the gear was too short and the tail would strike on take-off. The DC-8 did not have this problem because it had a more conventional landing gear design. This inherent limitation was the single most obvious reason to abandon the 737 and make the NG the last major upgrade. When Pratt & Whitney introduced the GTF engine in 2007 it was time for Boeing to start to look for a new design that would be able to benefit from its great potential. But in the last eight years Boeing was too busy mopping up the 787 mess, fighting the unions and buying back shares.

          • The Chinese built a copy of the Boeing 720 the Shanghai Y10, starting from about 1970 development lasted till first flight in 1980. With 5 flight crew and other out of date features, it was dropped for a version of the MD80.

          • All those numbers are for a standard load of passengers, 110 in the old figures. If I am not mistaken BA has a maximum load of approximately 30 passengers on its A318 in service at LCY. Whatever that number is the CS100 should take quite a few more and will not need to stop in Shannon on its way to New York. The fact of the matter is that the A318 has an inferior range compared to the CSeries and is much heavier. Yet it flies out of LCY. And so will the CS100.

          • Regarding A318 inferior range, doesnt make sense,. remember it is a larger plane with short fuelage. Thus it keeps the parent planes wing size and wing centre box. This is where the fuel is .
            Indeed if we look at maximum fuel capacities for each type we see a startling lead for A318 ( as you would expect ) of almost 75%.
            A318 capacity 23860L
            Cs100 capacity 13785L

            Yes the payload of passengers on A318 is down to about 34 and the short runway limits fuel load as well, but the A318 has no problem with the longer runways at Kennedy to make it make non stop back to London, because of its higher fuel capacity.

            I very much doubt an CS100 , with a small passenger load could even make it to Shannon from JFK.

          • dukeofurl: I very much doubt an CS100 , with a small passenger load could even make it to Shannon from JFK.

            “In our reasonings concerning matter of fact, there are all imaginable degrees of assurance, from the highest certainty to the lowest species of moral evidence. A wise man, therefore, proportions his belief to the evidence.”
            ― David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding

      • Norman.and Tranny you might want to have a look at the Paris air show sales. A lot of customers seem to be under the impression that the MAX is obviously not hopelessly outdated.

        • The A320NEO is more successful than the 737MAX and Boeing is basically exploiting its customer base in order the get orders. In fact, Boeing is loosing customers to Airbus.

  9. I think it’s an absolutely beautiful aircraft, and could find a role in the short/medium haul developing routes… Like Aer Lingus’ smaller UK cities to Dub-Hub when IAG take it over. ATRs are great but jet-to-jet travel is more popular and wind/gust issues over winter need to be overcome to ensure a smooth transfer traffic stream.

    Externally and internally… It’s a beauty

  10. I do believe Bombardier will get decent sales for the C-Series and should there ever be a C-500, it would only make things better. The question is, will it be merely a moneymaker or will it really be a hit for them?

    What I would like to know is the role that the GTF plays in these better than expected performance numbers. If a large part of this bonus comes from the engine, this could have a large impact on both Boeing and Airbus orders looking downstream.

    • Apparently a substantial portion of the better than expected performances come from the aerodynamic package, especially the wings. We all knew that P&W was being conservative and indeed the engine is a bit better than expected. But Bombardier was not conservative, on the contrary. When they officially launched the C Series in 2008 they were worried about not being able to meet their own specifications. But the plane turned out to be surprisingly better than they had anticipated. The sophistication of the wing and the Resin Transfer Infusion technique developed by Bombardier played a key role. And after the show the CS300 will stop in Belfast to pay tribute to the employees who manufactured this extraordinary wing.

    • Rob Dewar: “That wing, if we ever did the 500, of course would be used and modified to do that,” he said.”

      That is what I wanted to hear. To be able to use the same wing will save a lot of money to the strapped for cash Bombardier. But it will also save a lot of time. They will then be in a position to say that they have a complete family of aircraft. After that the customers can always ask for a CS700, or even a CS900, but the essential will be there to keep the assembly lines busy for a long time.

  11. C-Series is turning out to be real good aircraft but still it has some very big hurdles to cross, mainly reliability, maintenance, and cost to manufacture. I guess only time will judge the quality of C-Series, can it match dispatch rate of A&B NBs, it has to match dispatch rate soon to stay in game. Maintenance cost should not be a big problem though newer technologies take time to mature, manufacturer may need to guarantee maintenance cost.

    The biggest problem is to get the bridge money to finance the loss selling early batch planes. Sooner the manufacturing rate ramps up lower per unit manufacturing cost. A&B will try here to nip the buds but they have limitations as well as plane’s better performance will help. Taking out numbers out of hat, if first 50 plane cost 50 million each to manufacture and selling price is 30 million, that is 1 billion. If next 50 planes cost 40 million then again 500 million. Assuming at that time production is fully ramped up, each addition plane will cost 30 million, just enough to break even, so 1.5N is needed. I guess A&B cost to manufacture is around $25 million. I don’t think they can lower the price than this just the kill c-series, it will adversely affect price for all NB aircraft old/new, disrupting the market.
    So the question is, can BB sell it for 35m just because it is better, lower per seat cost, $10m will be paid back by lower operating cost? I don’t have enough information guess this. I think if CSeries is on a route where other NBs are also operating, yields would be better for cseries in a non leisure route.

    One thing is on BB side, big backlog at A&B.

  12. @ Trips

    “C-Series is turning out to be real good aircraft but still it has some very big hurdles to cross, mainly reliability, maintenance, and cost to manufacture.”

    Reliability: So far the aircraft appears to be very reliable. The increasing number of hours flown attest to this. And if we are to believe the flight crew the CS100 arrived in Paris from Montréal on its first cross-atlantic flight with zero snag. Of course there was a 100 day grounding last year due to an engine problem, but this has since been rectified and they don’t seem to have had any other problems since. In fact the P&W GTF engine is a bit overdesigned and will operate at relatively low temperatures, which means it will likely be a very reliable engine. The aircraft itself is also overdesigned a bit. In testing they were unable to break the wing before they reached the maximum extension of the test rig. If I am not mistaken it was something like twelve feet. And the fuselage is made of relatively conventional Al-Li which is easy to repair. This is important because on a commercial aircraft that is where the majority of the damages occur.

    Maintenance: The C Series has an advanced health monitoring system that connects the aircraft and its systems with the ground crews when it is in flight. This should facilitate greatly the maintenance process. And long maintenance intervals are already built into the aircraft. But BBD will have to sell a high quantity of aircraft in every region of the world before spare parts are easily available anywhere at any time.

    Manufacturing costs: That is a key issue because low manufacturing costs is the only way Bombardier will be able to compete with Airbus and Boeing on price. Especially in the early phase when A&B will sell at unusually low prices just to block the C Series. But we have to keep in mind that the cost of development of this extraordinary aircraft was only five billion dollars. That is a good indication of the future manufacturing costs and makes me believe that Bombardier will be able to produce the C Series cheaply and in great numbers.

    • You could add that Bombardier is way over budget, with delays eating up money. Nothing new there. They need more cash as is shown by the approach to Quebec, who themselves are heavily in debt. It will be dressed up as a ‘normal investment’ to pass the trade bodies but the end result is the same.

      • “They need more cash as is shown by the approach to Quebec, who themselves are heavily in debt.”

        You got that in reverse. It was a one-way initiative from the government. When queried by journalists at the show the Bombardier CEO was baffled. He had obviously never heard of such a proposal. It just came out of the blue by a minister who was anxious to see the CS500 launched without further delays. We were all very impressed by the extraordinary performances of the C Series but perhaps this minister got a little too exited. At least it shows that the government is interested. That is how Embraer became successful. And Airbus of course. But unfortunately in the UK they did not have this kind of vision: that the aerospace industry is very important for the economy of a country.

        • You seem to be downplaying that a bit much – as a spin doctor would ?

          Development costs are higher as Bombardier says.
          “Bombardier now estimates costs to develop the C Series at $5.4-billion, about 30 per cent more than its latest projection last year.” Globe and Mail.
          That $5.4 bill might not include development partners costs, it seems a bit low compared to the $1.4 bill write off of Learjet 85 costs when that development was stopped.

          The proposal from Caisse , is hardly a surprise, the specific details that they want to dilute the super voting shares of the family might be. The need for extra money has been kicked around for months, and with a credit rating of B+, there is no one else to talk to but ‘Quebec Inc’.

          It would be startling if the Bombardier – Beaudoin family were keeping these things from the CEO.

  13. The MOM 757 replacement should also cover the 737-9 (which is clearly selling poorly and is outclassed by the A321) as follows:

    Narrowbody. It’s just cheaper to punch a hole through the air with narrowbody than a widebody. And charter/ULCCs care much less about freight.

    Fully composite/electric/bleedless/etc. It’s time.

    Three fuselage lengths — 200, 250 and 300 seats at 28 inch (ULCC or charter) pitch. That’s optimal in terms of seats/flight attendant. These would translate into somewhat less than in legacy configuration or LCC (e.g. JetBlue) configuration.

    Wider fuselage than the A320 family.

    Two wings. A short-haul wing and a long-haul wing.

    Family of engines covering the above.

    Everything made as common as possible across the models. Presumably the cockpit would be the same as on the 787. Multisource the engines — clearly this aircraft would sit higher above the ground than the 737 so it would be able to accommodate the GTF. Make the engines swappable as on the 787. Make all other multisourced components the same (e.g. APU).

    Concept would be similar to the DC-8-60 series which came with two wings and two fuselage lengths.

    In theory, you could even make (though I doubt it would sell in significant numbers) the 200 seat fuselage with the long-haul wing to produce something with very long range.

    Most important would be for Boeing to convene a number of customer councils, including, specifically, a ULCC council, to ensure the aircraft meets the needs across the industry.

    Everything in sight should be modular. One module could be a crew-rest module, for instance, for those versions of the aircraft that are used for long-haul thin routes. Modular galleys, modular lavs.

    Aircraft should be “future protected” so that, for instance, it would be able to accommodate 27 inch pitch seats (or less) if ULCC operators see that happening.

    What about the 100-200 seat range? Easy. Boeing should buy the CSeries program, or take a 50% stake in it or similar.

  14. Relative to your comment ‘The last time a mainline jet exceeded specifications at entry into service—–‘ you missed one . When the 757-200 entered service in 1983 powered by RB211-535C engines it exceeded it’s nominal (or brochure or estimated) cruise performance by 4% and it’s guaranteed performance by further similar amount.

  15. BBC: Analysts have urged Bombardier to be more aggressive on price and offer bigger discounts in order to book more orders quickly. Mr Cromer does not seem in any hurry to cut costs for a bigger market share, however. “Everyone wants to get into the price discussion and say that if you don’t cut prices you won’t get orders. The fact of the matter is, this is an all-new aircraft that fits into many different airline business plans. Price is just one of the aspects during negotiations,” he said.

    That has been Bombardier’s philosophy for the past ten years. For this approach to succeed you need at least three things: a lot of nerves, a good product and an outstanding sales team. So far we know that they have the first two. For the third one we may have to wait a few more months to find out.


  16. The CSeries has obsoleted the 737 and 320. Only A and B’s production/capital prowess and 737/320 fleet penetration has kept their sales going. In 5 years time we will see orders tipping to the CSeries favor once it has proven its performance parameters, and the CS500 being offered for sale.

    Boeing’s MOM will be the darling of LCC’s going to longer routes. A low cost path for Boeing will be a 777X-type new composite wing upgrade of the MAX, with derated 747 GEnx engines. Coupled to full interior fuselage sculpting and the usual aerodynamic and structural tweaks. Also possible 787-3 wing use. Of course 787 cockpit adoption. This can still catch up with the 757 replacement cycle if Boeing finds the capital and the people to implement it.

    Boeing can use its new 777X wing plant to produce the wings, Spirit for the modified fuselage. A fully internally modified 737 fuselage will maintain better aerodynamics compared to twin aisle. And at this trip time levels, 737 turnaround time levels are adequate.

    Rene Abad, AirPino PH

  17. For the first in many a moon, I’m excited about a new aircraft and this is the C Series. A new beautiful airliner that is exceeding specs and expectations.

    What’s more. it’s not a ‘derivative’, ‘upgraded’ or ‘revived’ version of the tired old bangers coming out of Seattle or Toulouse but a brand new development from Canada and NI in the UK. Its perfomance advantage is clearly not only due to the excellent GTF powerplant. Competition is good and I wish Bombardier Aerospace the best with this aircraft.

    As a frequent air flyer I simply cannot wait to get onboard the C Series. Je veux sauter bientôt à bord du le C Series.

  18. Björn, what is your assumption for maximum Ma*L/D in your calculations? How close do you think the CS comes to that in practical operations?

  19. London City Airport data for the Bombardier CSeries:

    JFK-SNN Distance: 2674 NM
    JFK-LCY Distance: 2995 NM

    CS100 Range: 3100 NM + 5% = 3250 NM*
    CS300 Range: 3300 NM + 5% = 3450 NM

    JFK Runway Length: 14511 ft
    LCY Runway Length: 4948 ft

    CS100 Take Off Field Length: 4000 ft
    CS300 Take Off Field Length: 5000 ft

    CS100 Landing Field Length: 4450 ft
    CS300 Landing Field Length: 4800 ft

    CS100 Capacity: 108 (up to 133)
    CS300 Capacity: 130 (up to 160)

    * The CS100 range will eventually be the same (3450 NM) as the CS300 after some minor modifications to the original design will have been implemented to benefit from the latest developments.


    Airbus A318 Range: 3100 NM
    BA’s two A318 carry 32 passengers out of LCY and have to do a pit stop in SNN on their way to JFK because of prevailing westerly winds.

    • The pit stop is because of the short runway at LCY means max range is reduced heavily. The head winds have an effect too. ( increases flight time)

      The effective runway at LCY is 1199m or 3933ft (TORA) I have checked this out with official UK Airports figures. Your number of 4948ft is just fantasy as Bombardier own figures take 1250nm of the max range with takeoff from LCY

      This applies to A318 which has 75% more fuel capacity than Cs100 ( bigger wing and wing box stores more fuel)

      Bombardier own range calculation figures for JFK show CS100 as not going near Ireland
      Yes there is a 5% improvement recently but I see Cs100 is only 120 min ETOPs so it means it cant fly shortest great circle route. FAA rules now mean ETOPs over land is counted now , not just over water.

      Conclusion: Short runway means LCY nonstop to JFK is ruled out by reduced fuel load.
      Etops 120 rules out return flight as it doesnt carry enough fuel for longer route. Its 75% less maximum fuel load than A318. ( which we do know does make it)
      This is why:
      The flight time from New York to London is about 6-6.5 hours.
      The return flight time from London to New York is about 8 hours.

  20. @ dukeofurl

    In this context fuel capacity is meaningless because the two aircraft have different weights. We are talking about RANGE here. The A318 has less range than the CS100, that is a fact: 3100 NM for the A318 versus 3250 NM+ for the CS100. The latter also takes less distance to take off because it is a lighter aircraft that was designed for this kind of performance, i.e., short takeoff distances, hot weather and high altitudes. It’s actually the CS100’s best selling point: special applications.

    CS100 takeoff distance: 4000 ft
    A318 takeoff distance: 5430 ft

    That is the reason why BA’s A318 carry only 32 passengers. I expect the CS100 to operate close to maximum capacity from LCY to JFK once the aircraft will be up to the latest specifications: 3450 NM range. It already did almost that on its return flight to Montréal from Zurich: 3350 NM, 8.4 hour flight, and no pit stop.


    As for the LCY runway length, according to Wikipedia it is 4,948 ft. Bombardier specifies the exact same thing: 4,948 ft. Bombardier’s figures are normally reliable. They are actually on the conservative side.


    As for ETOPs rules they are the same for the CS100 as for the A318. But the capabilities are not: the C Series is a more modern aircraft and that is reflected in its operational performances. The A318 is not only an older design but also a less that optimized one. For it is a shorter variant of the A319, which is itself a shorter variant of the A320. Airbus sold only 79 frames and the A318 is no longer in production.

    • You still dont get it. London City has a short available runway – for all airliners.
      Thats why Bombardiers own figures for CS100 range have a reduction of 1250nm when you compare London City with London Gatwick. I have pointed these range numbers out for you and still you ignore them.

      Even with the 5% extra capability Bombardier dont claim on their website that they can reach anywhere near JFK non stop with a full load

      The usuable runway length is from London City airport aeronautical data
      This shows the paved area is as you have said but the usable length or TORA is 3934ft. This what planes can use for takeoff. Nothing more.
      You are throwing your credibility away with something you are relying on wikipedia, and nothing about how planes takeoff.

      Its great they went Zurich -Montreal nonstop- with 8 on board which took 8.5 hours. This of course not being a scheduled passenger flight didnt have to follow Etops rules.

      The one benefit you havent mentioned for LCY when Swiss starts operation is the quietness. With its likely destinations a full load with the short runway available ont be a problem

  21. Again using official figures from both companies websites for range

    A318, max fuel capacity 24210L ( same as A320) Range up 3100nm which Airbus own graphical figures show can just reach Heathrow from Kennedy. Obviously the reduced pax numbers allows up max range consistently.

    CS100 has 13,785L and range from JFK is 2950nm, and cant reach Shannon. Again all from Bombardier website.

    Weight doesnt seem to matter much as the A320 has a slightly longer range up to 3500nm. A forgotten factor is enough thrust to reach top of climb quicker, a bigger wing helps too.

    Looking more closely at max takeoff weights , we have A318 is 59t or 68t depending on engine. That for CS100 is just under 61t. So much for ‘light’ plane that has much less fuel.

  22. @ dukeofurl

    “A forgotten factor is enough thrust to reach top of climb quicker.”

    A forgotten factor is that an operator who wants to fly the C Series to JFK from LCY would obviously select a more powerful engine, as three different engine variants are available as an option for the CS100:

    1. PW1519G (18, 900 lbf)
    2. PW1521G (21,000 lbf)
    3. PW1524G (23,300 lbf)

    In other words the CS100 can be ordered from Bombardier with the CS300 engines. This was planned from day one and I often refer to it as the Hot Rod version. If the aircraft is intended to be used in a place like London City (short runway), Denver (high altitude) or Dubai (hot weather) this option becomes a must. I presume it would be the option favoured by British Airways if they elected to replace their A318 with the C Series. But SWISS probably does not require that kind of power because it will likely not need a full load of fuel to serve other European cities from London.

    Also, if you insist on fuel quantities, you have to know that the C Series can take more fuel than originally announced, hence the increased range. This is discussed in the following article:


    The figures we both use might be somewhat obsolete already as the aircraft is still in development and will not be certified until later this year. Speaking of figures, it would be best to refer to a neutral observer, i.e., not a C Series basher nor a C Series cheerleader, to settle this argument. Perhaps our own Bjorn Fehrm could have a close look into this as you are raising some valid points, but perhaps using incorrect figures. In this business reliable data is extremely important. And standardized comparisons is even more important. We can argue indefinitely back and forth until Scott gets tired of it and tells us to cut it off, but I think it would be better if we left it there before we get reprimanded.

  23. Ive checked back in Leeham stories, the closest is a CS300/A319neo/737-7max comparison here


    Its subscription only. Understandably people are interested in real world comparisons with the newest. Yesterdays planes like A318 dont get a look in.

    The only snippet is this:
    “PW’s 73 in fan version of the PW1000G for CSeries is slightly less efficient that the 81 in version for A319neo but CS300 lower weight makes sure this is more than compensated for.”

    British Airways has ordered airbus neo versions , so may not be buying CS Series. So it may never get the chance to fly LCY-JFK, as they may upgauge to A319neo some way down the track

    • Normally you wouldn’t even compare the CS100 and the A318, as the airbus has not been successful in the market and its now seen definitely as yesterday’s plane.
      As far as engines go, British Airways bought the A318-112 Elite CJ version , which had CFM-56-5B9 engines. The rest of BA fleet of Airbus 319/320/321 are all powered by IAE engines. These weren’t available for the 318, the alternative were CFM and PW6000 series.
      So its a bit of orphan, being a long range corporate jet version, with premium business cabin.
      BA flys to 26 European destinations from LCY, with its Cityflyer brand but uses E170/190 and not any Airbus planes.

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