Airbus investment resets the clock on CSeries

Special to Leeham News

 By Olivier Bonnassies

Airfinance Journal

April 17, 2018, (c) Airfinance Journal, Montreal: Aviation Week & Space Technology managing director technology Graham Warwick believe the acquisition of a 50.1% stake into Bombardier’s CSeries will give the program opportunities in many areas.

Talking at the Innovation Aerospace Forum in Montreal, Warwick says Airbus expertise in marketing, sales and support will be “immediate benefits” to the CSeries program.

Warwick recalls that Airbus is into its second iteration of the Airbus A320 program, whilst Bombardier’s CSeries is a new product.

“The CSeries is right at the beginning of its life. It clearly resets the clock for the CSeries and can even have a meaningful impact in the future,” he says.

Bombardier’s CSeries vice president program Rob Dewar says 29 CS100/300s are now in service with three customers: Air Baltic, Swiss and Korean Air.

The Canadian manufacturer continues to be pleased with the introduction into service.

High utilization

The program has recorded more than 40,000 revenue flights with an average of 10 flight hours per day, he says. Air Baltic has used the CS300 model on 17 hours daily utilization, says Dewar, combining European revenue flights with a long-haul flight to Abu Dhabi, he says.

In terms of maintenance, Bombardier says it has performed more than 50 A checks on the CSeries with no issues being reported.

Dewar brands the CSeries as an innovative aircraft in terms of advanced materials, electric brakes, which improve dispatch reliability compared with hydraulic brakes.

Bombardier says the aircraft family is a clean sheet design with latest technology.  The advanced flight deck allows a three-day reduction in pilot training.

The CSeries includes a fly-by-wire system while commonality between systems is as high as 99%, according to Dewar.

He says the CSeries is a disruptive aircraft as it focuses on the 100 to 150-seat market. “But we have an advantage in this market: it is a new aircraft equipped with the latest technology”.

Bombardier’s president and chief executive officer Alain Bellemare says the CSeries is a big venture for a company like Bombardier.

“We needed a partner. Airbus brings three things: they have an amazing customer reach with large scale and this will help accelerate CSeries sales. Airbus has a supply chain expertise and the scale with it. This will also benefit us. Finally Airbus has one of the best aftermarket customer network in the world.”

“We are on the verge of closing the partnership, which brings tremendous value for customer and shareholders,” he adds.


99 Comments on “Airbus investment resets the clock on CSeries

  1. Interesting comment on 2nd generation A320 and the CS being 1st generation. The CS in some way and FSA available in 2018.

    Had my doubts about the “CS500” but if it is a modest stretch with ~150 pax (CS300=130) in typical two class layout (FA’s =3) and with PIP’s could give it an ~3500Nm range it could be a very nice aircraft. Maybe it was for such an aircraft that BA was/is worried about.

    This will leave the door open for an A320+ (~180 seats in typical 2 class vs current 165)?

    • Then the 321+ (modest stretch) could move to 210-220 seats (current 206) in similar layout but with 2nd access door in front of the wing. Both (320+/321+) being a modest (3m/10ft) stretch of the previous models and with new CFRP wing?

      • Airbus has designed the A321++ most likely with present 33k engines, new carbon wing and wingbox and then stopped the project.
        Probably did they not get the asking price from key customers as they await 797 prices for the smaller “797-200” or Airbus could not promise volume production rates until mid 2020’s and by that time better engines will be available as well as 797’s.

        • Using a wing design based on the Cseries and the production facilities at Shorts in Northern Ireland could reduce the development time and cost substantially.
          All new wings in carbon are expensive to design and test and then the manufacturing process is more complex than that of AL.
          Maybe even the the carbon rear empennage could be used on a longer A321 as well ( as the aerodynamic surfaces can be smaller), the drop in weight of the plane would allow existing 35k engines to be used rather than a new heavier design .
          The modern mantra is to make as much of the plane structural sections as reusable in different designs as possible, the advances now come in new manufacturing processes and automation. Both are seen in the 777X.
          After all the A320 series basic wing is over 30 years old now and Boeing was able to give its 737 a competitive advantage by making a lighter wing for its NG series making the ‘old’ 737 in general lighter than its competitor ( which allows lower thrust engines !)

          • “… making a lighter wing for its NG series making the ‘old’ 737 in general lighter than its competitor.”

            Isn’t that more due the certification differences ( cabin g’s and obstacle clearance/rate of climb 1 engine out?)

            then the redesign apparently didn’t allow taking full advantage of design advances. NASA: NG wing only shows _elements_ of a supercritical wing.

          • Heres a detailed description of the NG wing
            “Much of the efficiency revolved around the redesigned wing. With 25% more total surface area and potentially 30% more fuel capacity, the new wing has much to offer. Boasting a higher span than the Classic, the new wing is a more swept with a constant angle of sweep and double-slotted continuous span flaps. Gone is the double swept leading edge and characteristic ‘kink’ of the earlier wing. Similarly, there have been changes to the leading and trailing edge flaps that have resulted in weight saving as well as aerodynamic efficiency.”

            Thats not just ‘certification’, they made a thinner, larger area wing with more span and lighter. This sort of thing is Boeings forte

    • Exactly. Boeing publicly stated they thought the CSeries upon being lengthen was what really concerned them.

  2. That’s exactly the issue with the CS…..

    29 flying…and that thing is around for years!

    • Once the deal is closed sales and production will change, these things don’t happen overnight. After Mirabel an FSA outside North America could become priority depending on Geographic’s of sales. realities and AB’s options to increase shareholding to >50.1%.

      Think there are a number of sales in the pipeline waiting for the finalization of the agreement?

      • Sash: Same could have been said for the 787 (or the A350 when it finally hit Version 4.0)

        I recall the A400 is still having teething issues.

        RRs are brewing up on 787s wings (haven’t been able to get it right since 2007?).

        None of this stuff is easy .

        • Which is a bigger problem TW ? A ‘possible’ resonance in the T 1K compressor section or actual CFM 56 engines shedding their inlets which penetrate the fuselage. Last report on the 1st occurrence was Dec 2016…
          waiting for an immediate fix for 1000s engines ….. not when its Boeing-Southwest-GE involved.

          • Apparently the FAA has had a ADD for the CFM56-7B pending for almost 18 months since the earlier SW fan fatigue failure.

            Its clear to me pressure from GE/Southwest/Boeing is delaying this issue so they dont have pull lots of planes from service to the detailed ultrasonic testing.

          • @Duke
            If that’s the case, it’s extremely worrying.

        • we are talking about a SA which usually sees higher rates….

          the CS is around for almost 2 years and has a total number of half a A320 / B737 monthly rate flying.

          That’s the issue.

    • The C-series need a dedicated assembly flow line. to squeeze them into the existing hall with the CRJ’s was a poor mans solution.
      Airbus must shake their heads and as quickly as possible build a new full flow FAL in Mobile. After procucing the majority of CS-100’s to DAL down in Mobile they might split production to keep the CS100 FAL at Mirabel where it can rub sholders with the different CRJ’s in and just do the CS300/500 in Mobile.

      • I wouldn’t be surprised if Airbus would open a third CSeries FAL in Europe. For instance in Spain (lower wages, and likely eager government that would want to invest in a location).

        About Mirabel, there are some changes being made to improve efficiency there. I think FliegerFaust has an article about it (he’s usually right on the mark when it comes to the production/factory side of Bombardier).

        • We will see, I feel it depend on sales. Can they break into China with a few hundred aircraft sales they can do it in next to the A320 FAL inTianjin just like in Mobile. However the Chinese might want to protect their own ARJ21 and C919 sales blocking any such move to increase competition. For a FAL in Eupore the old Fokker works might fit well?

    • Besides cost of production, having just 29 in service is another sign of problems as it ideally should be 29/month. Right now they are the Fokker of the West.

  3. At the end of the day this is only a bandaid for Bombardier. The company got here because of bad management, poor execution and cash shortages. Its ownership structure didn’t (and still won’t) allow quick & straightforward resolution of these because the controling families lose their majoritiy voting position if they issue more common stock…and since their debt isn’t cheap they sell off minority-ownership of distressed programmes to control ( & mismanage) the whole. They have failed to meet their production targets (planes & trains), despite constantly revising them downwards or reinterpreting them.

    If Airbus does not act honourably and in the best interest of the CSeries, this will be a fiasco. The company needs reatructueing under world class leadership.

    • Chris:

      Airbus and honorable? Seem to recall some bribery scandals that removed the leadership……

      Airbus is not buying 50.1% of BBD, its 50.1% of the C Series only.

      You can trash BBD till the cows come home, when was the last time anyone built a brand new single airless larger chimerical aircraft?

      Not to mention got it right? Yes they have issues, yes BBD management has its problems, but they hit the entire 9 innings worth of balls out of the park on this one without a flaw.

      For someone who understands tech, that is like Hannibal getting over the Alps with anything let alone an intact Army and Elephants.

      Shackleton rescuing his crew from the Antarctic.

      Blighs successfully sailing (3500 miles?) in a skiff after the mutiny.

      • By all rights, this company should be bankrupt and dead from its colossal mismanagement. I guess I’ll grant you the CSeries technical achievement, but what a Pyrrhic victory. And, it’s more like Hannibal getting over the Alps with 300 troops and five sick elephants. Don’t believe this group won’t screw up “big time” again, most likely on the trains. For a flavoring on who you’re dealing with, google “Bombardier train lawsuits”, and “Bombardier Azerbaijan corruption case”, and “Bombardier South Africa corruption case”. Toronto’s still suing them for $50 mil on delayed streetcar deliveries. Metrolinx wanted to sever its rail contract with them. And, “the cherry on top”, read about them welshing on residual value lease payments to Comerica on BBD regional jets! (Comerica lost the initial case on a technicality, but so much for “my word is my bond”, BBD! Having to sue your partner to get paid doesn’t engender confidence in the partner!)

        • Boeing should be dead too from its 787 management- only reason it didnt come to the Bombardier situation was it was too big to fail. ( Arent we glad Boeing didnt win the B-21 USAF bomber program as that could be a KC-46 on steroids)
          In the end we should be glad that the basic design is sound for 787 and Cseries and does what they say it would do and the customers are happy.

        • For me Montana, you are a big frustrated looser at the same level as Boeing.

          • As part of the self police, that is out of line.

            Disagree with Montana all you want, better yet state why, but calling people names is going to get you suspended or banned. Yep, been there, done that, got a T shirt and learned my lesson (I think)

          • I guess I could care less about the rest of BBD.

            What I care about is aircraft and they did a magnification job on getting the things you need to right.

            It got rescued and needed it obviously, but we got a beautifully well done aircraft out of it.

            Trains, meh.

          • Claude B.: Must have hit a nerve, eh? And, if you’re going to insult me, do it properly please. It’s “loser”, not “looser”. I do tend to get “looser” though—like many people—after a drink or two! (LOL)

      • A policy without the means to implemebt i is not a policy- is an aspiration, a dream. It’s just not good enough to produce a world class product if you can’t compete in the market you’re entering: with perfect execution, sales and support …and deep pockets to be able to go the distance. Noone makes a 20 year investment in a potential orphan from a mismanaged company.

        Superior products are only the tip of the spear. Now it’s a give-away to Airbus, a final hail-Mary pass.

        • There are countless cases of enterprises that ended with imense success resp. profit that took huge risks in developing revolutionary products, often without enough recources and most times going through bad years of stuggle, always close to bankruptcy. Mannesmann, Apple, Dyson, Airbus, just to name a few. There is a narrow line between total success and total desaster and sometimes it comes down to sheer luck.

          I can tell you from my own experience, and having been in all those places way up in the sky and below the green. One day the world looks at you like a god, the next you are the ultimate fool.

          BBD took a great risk in developing this plane and I can only congratulate them for their achievements. And after being close to death, because much did not go to plan, now it seems like the very last life line they could catch (Airbus) might indeed provide the necessary recources to make the C-Series a resounding success.

      • On corruption: I find it problematic to throw stones from a glass house where juicy forms of corruption and fraud have been formalized into legality.

        • Agreed, on both sides of the Atlantic.
          Airbus, Boeing, BAE, Lockheed Martin etc all make awesome products, but are completely amoral in how they run their business.

          • There are differences, the US companies always ask for a nod from the CIA or similar before the money is transferred to the agent and his distribution scheme in a select tax haven, the Europeans sometimes forget to ask the US if it is “No technical objection”. It has been going on since the mid 1800’s and keep korrupt families korrupt generation after generation.
            Any multi million dollar public sale or defence sale south of Rio Grande or the Alps or East of Oder River is worth a detailed look.

        • “I find it problematic to throw stones from a glass house”

          Yet you do, all the time.

    • Everyone keeps forgetting that Bombardier is a transport company, not an aerospace company like all the others. For at least three decades its highly effective and very innovative rail transport division has been subsidising its aviation division. What worries evaluators of the company more is not the three aviation product lines but the fluctuating competence of the multiple geographic rail divisions. For example the German, British and French divisions are doing well, the North American notably poorly – so much so that it was banned from bidding in its own home nation of Canada!

      • In fact, Bombardier Inc is the biggest transport on earth thait include Aviation + Rail division.
        I agree the North American division had many problems, but it is on a way to get everything fixed soon.
        Bombardier Rail have also a division in India.

        Many think Bombardier is C Series?! Well they better have a look here:

        • Yep, like the 787 many parts are outsourced.

          BBD did it though. Not COMIC, not SuperJet, not UA, BBD.

          Come to think of it, RR engines on 757?

          Landing gear on the 777x?

          Engines on the A400? (well we have seen how that worked out, insourced)

      • “it was banned from bidding in its own home nation of Canada!”

        You should check that one.
        Bombardier ‘operates’ the Toronto metrolinx rail service currently and they havent been allowed to bid for a new service because of conflict of interest.
        Dont really understand it all, neither does the person who made the comment. There is other issues about delivery on a different contract.
        Not really important for here

  4. Who really wants these things in the U.S. (except Delta)? Regionals are barred by the scope clause. Mainline pilots really want to fly “big boy” airplanes—A320s or 737s. So, are you left with “step up”, newly minted mainliners putting in two or three years—before move by on to the “big boy” airplanes and sizably more dollars? And hello, Delta, is this a good decision to increase fleet diversity at the lower end, and use your pilot resources here? You did hear there’s a “bow wave” of retirements coming shortly, right?

    • Some senior pilots might like to do several small jumps in the most modern narrowbody aircraft available and be home almost every evening for dinner and minor league baseball.

      • WE will have to see.

        The beauty of the CS (particularly the 300) is that it can make money flying full paid pilots.

        That hop I saw the 737-800 making? .

        Its issue was its stability, now that is in place, the sky is literately the limit.

        • Three considerations: Up-gaging was done: 1) so airlines could haul more passengers per flight; 2) to reduce flights around crowded airports; and 3) to kill off the CSeries. I would not know the percentages of these reasons. But if a LCC puts 150 seats in a CSeries 300, they stand a good chance of being successful. Air Baltic, I think puts in 144 seats. I also think they are authorized to put in 160 seats.

      • I believe the drop in pay and retirement would be quite substantial, too say nothing of the drop in prestige and status. “Yep, I used to captain a 777, but gave it up for this real substantial, glorified regional jet!” (LOL, and ROFL!)

        • I have worked with and around a lot of highly accomplished people, including one rocket scientist (working on cars and thank him for teaching me how to clean water emulsion out of a flooded engine) .

          Former architect driving trucks. Owner of a CPA flying prop jobs.

          Not often, but some people look at things and say, ok, I want simpler.

          I would have been happy to fly regional if I could make a living at it.

          Long haul 777? Can’t imagine anything more boring that 17 hours with nothing happening.

          • You did say the “key words”: not often. They’re taking at least 75 of these. I restate that a big amount of these will be flown by newly minted mainline pilots looking to move up to “big boy” airplanes quickly. Remember a/c size and airline seniority really count, as per as pilot compensation, retirement, and prestige. The CS 100’s a regional, that doesn’t really “fit” mainline (in the US, anyway).

        • Montana, you would love to be captain on the C Series, because the C Series are superior not bigger, but SUPERIOR 👍 in quality. Lol! Ha! Ha! 😁

        • There are still some pilots having done the widebody flying having enough Money and value flying a modern and swift handling aircraft and be home most evenings with the kids at soccer or MLB practice . Even having the time fly fighter jets in the weekends with your buddies as an Air National Guard Pilot.
          Try that being an Emirates 777 ex-pat pilot stationed in a hot DBX couting your Money longing for a cold beer…

          • I was really referring to pilots on Delta’s roster. But since you mentioned Dubai, looks like you’ve got good options “coming home”, if you’re an expat pilot. Heineken Lounge, or up to 48 355max ml cans, duty free. I understand you’ll need to consume them in your private residence. You can also find cold beer at bars/lounges at the better hotels. It’s even more enjoyable in hot, dusty Dubai. So, drink up!

        • Hello MontanaOsprey and others,

          Regarding: “I believe the drop in pay and retirement would be quite substantial”

          Delta’s Per flight hour CS-100 pay rates are between those for its 717’s and its MD88/90’s. For 717 Captains, switching to CS100’s will give a very slight pay raise. Delta has not seemed to have any problem filling flight crew positions for its fleet of 91 Boeing 717’s. Per hour flight rates below are for first year captains and first officers. Delta pilots have negotiated pay rates for some types, such as CRJ-900, that mainline Delta has never flown.

          777: $303/$86
          A350: $303 / $86
          A330: $290 / $86
          787: $290 / $86
          767-400: $286 / $86
          767-300: $251 / $86
          757: $251 / $86
          A321: $244/ $86
          737-900: $244 / $86
          737-700/800: $243 / $86
          A320/ A319: $235 / $86
          MD90/MD88: $227 / $86
          Cs-100/ $222 /$86
          717: $219 / $86
          CRJ-900/ $155 / $86

          Pay rates at 12 years.
          777: $330 / $226
          Cs-100: $245 / $168

          If Delta pilots object to flying Cs-100’s, pilots from Delta’s Regional affiliates would probably be most happy to switch employers and take the positions. Same pay rates as above for Delta Regional affiliate SkyWest, one of the lower (lower, not low) turnover regionals.

          CRJ-900: $68 /$37
          CRJ-700: $67 / $37
          CRJ-200: $63 / $37

          SkyWest CRJ-900 captains flight hour rate maxes out at $121 at 20 years.

          • Robert

            I never realized how large the difference is, the cs100 pilot will earn 3 times what a CRJ pilot is earning!

            Normalizing by seat if a CRJ-700 is configured for 67 seats and a cs100 for 110 seats then pilot costs are $1000/seat/year on a CRJ-700 and $2000/seat/year on a cs100. Still a big difference.

      • A friend of mine flies turboprops very happily. Home with the wife and kids every night. Another went to UPS because “packages don’t complain.” Not everybody wants to spend their whole life away from home suffering from jet lag and complaints.

    • Delta has 318 aircraft in the 110 to 150 passenger range with missions that could be flown by cs100/300. Of those 160 MD-88/90 are due to be replaced.

      The balance are a mix of 737-700, A319 and 717-200. If in time also replaced by c-series the result would be a substantially more uniform fleet.

      As for retirements coming, perhaps the strategy is to pull pilots from the regionals into smaller mainline aircraft.

      • Hello jbeeko,

        Regarding: “Delta has 318 aircraft in the 110 to 150 passenger range with missions that could be flown by cs100/300. Of those 160 MD-88/90 are due to be replaced. ”

        Delta management has consistently stated that the primary use, or at least initial use, of their CS100’s will be to up-gauge routes currently flown by 76 regional jets, which will free up the 76 seat regional jets to replace 50 seat regional jets, which will then be retired. See for instance the excerpts below from a 9-13-17 FlightGobal article. See the link after the excerpts for the full article. This is part of a general up-gauging plan at Delta in which the size of aircraft operating many routes is being up-gauged one notch.

        “Delta Air Lines will fly its first Bombardier CS100s in New York, says president Glen Hauenstein.”

        “The CS100, which will be configured with 110 seats, will initially be used to “free up” 76-seat regional jets in Delta’s feeder fleet that can in turn be used to replace 50-seat regional jets, says Hauenstein.”

        According to Delta management, the MD88 replacements have already been ordered and are entering service, part of Delta’s 737-900ER (180 seats) and A321 orders (192 seats) are being used as MD88 (149 seat)replacements. See the excerpt below from a 4-29-16 Delta press release about a Delta A321 order. The full press release may be found at the link after the press release.

        “Delta has reached an agreement with Airbus to acquire 37 additional A321s as part of its efforts to renew its narrowbody fleet. The fuel-efficient A321s will replace older-generation jets, including the MD-88.

        The agreement follows an announcement Thursday that Delta would become the U.S. launch customer for Bombardier’s C-Series small narrowbody aircraft.

        “The Airbus A320 family of aircraft continues to be a cost-efficient, reliable and customer-pleasing mainstay of our narrowbody fleet,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s incoming chief executive. “The order for the A321s is an opportunistic fleet move that enables us to produce strong returns and cost-effectively accelerate the retirement of Delta’s 116 MD-88s in a capital efficient manner.”

        I am guessing that what will happen, analogous to Cs100’s replacing 76 seat regional jets which then replace 5o seat regional jets, is that 737-900ER’s (180 seats) and A321’s (192 seats) will and already have taken over 737-800 (160 seats) and A320 (157 to 160 seats) routes, which will then take over MD-88 (149 seats) routes. It all makes more sense if you think of the aircraft that replaces another as being the aircraft that it makes the most sense for an airline to add to its fleet at the time that an older type is retired, rather than something that necessarily has the same range, passenger capacity, and configuration as the aircraft being retired. In the 1960’s for instance, on many West Coast local routes, United Airlines “replaced” twin prop 44 seat Convair 340’s with tri-jet 727-100’s which had about 100 seats, which were later replaced by 737-200’s with about the same seating capacity, which were later replaced by 30 seat turboprops, which were later replaced by 50 seat regional jets.

        • This makes sense..

          “It all makes more sense if you think of the aircraft that replaces another as being the aircraft that it makes the most sense for an airline to add to its fleet at the time that an older type is retired.”

          But surely they must have longer term plans for those CS100 beyond being regional feeder aircraft. You don’t need a 3500nm range aircraft for that.

          • Very true . What they say and what they do can be different. The other view is you dont tell your rivals what you really are going to do, especially for a new fleet type.
            We had Southwest announcing a ‘big future’ for its Max 7 fleet and at the same time deferring delivery of same model.

            a 110 seater being used to ‘free up’ a 76 seater ? and have those empty or discounted seats .yeah right

          • Hello dukeofurl.

            Regarding:” a 110 seater being used to ‘free up’ a 76 seater ? and have those empty or discounted seats .yeah right”

            Does Delta believe that 76 seats was the optimum seating capacity for all routes currently being flown by 76 seat Delta Connection jets? Could it be that Delta believes that 90, 100, or 110 seats would have been a better fit for some of these routes if they had 90, 100, or 110 seat aircraft (like their 110 seat Boeing 717’s or on order Cs100’s)available for use on these routes, and that some routes are currently being flown by 76 seat aircraft because these aircraft were the least bad fit available for the route, rather than the ideal fit for the route?

            From statements of Delta management over the years it is pretty clear that they are currently using 50 seat jets on many Delta Connection routes not because they believe they believe 50 seat aircraft are ideal or even good for the route, but because that is what they are stuck with using because scope clause rules will not allow them to replace more of their Delta Connection 50 seaters with 76 seaters.

          • For anyone who considers city pairs to be either regional affiliate routes or mainline routes, and can’t imagine routes changing back and forth between regional and mainline equipment and crews, can you tell me whether you would consider Salt Lake City to Boise (about 290 sm) a regional or mainline route? Here is Delta’s schedule on this route for 5-18-18, one month from the day I am writing this.

            Departure Time / Equipment / Operator / Flight #
            9:40 AM / E175 / Skywest DBA Delta Connection / 4558
            11:10 AM / A320 / Delta / 2579
            1:46 PM / E175 / Skywest DBA Delta Connection / 4595
            5:00 PM / E175 / Skywest DBA Delta Connection / 4509
            8:15 PM / E175 / Skywest DBA Delta Connection /4549
            10:20 PM / 737-900ER / Delta / 1275

            Seating capacities at Delta Connection and Delta
            E175: 76 seats
            A320: 157 or 160 seats
            737-900ER: 180 seats

            Is the 1:2 mainline to regional ratio for this route on this day (at Delta equipment mix will often change with day of the week) what Delta considered to be optimal if they had unlimited availability of different seating capacities in their fleet, or just what they considered to be the optimal solution given the current actual availability of different seating capacities in their fleet? Might Delta wish they had more aircraft of certain seating capacities and less of other seating capacities?

        • Just seen another quote of Delta about what their intentions were for the Cs100
          “Executives have previously indicated that the airline will fly the CS100 from coastal hubs in Los Angeles, New York and Seattle to mid-continent points, including ones in Texas.”

          So the ‘newer’ plan makes less sense, replacing 76 seaters on his wholly owned subsidiary Endevour branded as Delta Connect.
          Will wait till 3 months before EIS to see what ‘final’ plan is .
          Maybe there is a dart board where they pick the destinations?

          • I got that bit wrong, they dont have to brand them as Delta Connect. They can mix and match Connect and mainline on the same route

            As for Boise, its the state capital so that brings a lot of traffic and when you look at the metro area population, which is the number to think about for airline travel, we have 660,000. This isnt a minor city of say 140,000 which could put it in the regional stakes.
            The 737-900 at 10:20 PM to Boise is bizarre for that late at night. Does that plane position there for a longer range destination from Boise in the morning?

          • Hello dukeof url,

            Regarding: “The 737-900 at 10:20 PM to Boise is bizarre for that late at night. Does that plane position there for a longer range destination from Boise in the morning?”

            The 737-900ER heads back to Salt Lake City at 6 AM the next morning (5-19) as Flight 2980.

        • I think that the A321’s do replace the 757’s pretty efficient on most of its routes and even replace some 767 flights.
          Flying more modern Aircrafts gives you higher utlilization and lower fuel burn, the MD80’s are pretty sensitive machines requiring a steady hangar schedule with replacement components and Engines, just look at Allegiant getting tierd of them breaking down for them with AAR doing the work. Delta Tech Ops knows more and can more easily keep the MD80’s in the air.
          The 717 is another much happier story with A320/737NG like reliability or better.

    • Montana,
      A friend of mine is a DL pilot, he’s been in the left seat of the MDs for over a decade. Would he like to move up? Yes, as he is somewhat tired of the workload in those older aircraft. And the pay bump would be nice.
      But he stays because his quality of life is excellent with his tenure. He is home every weekend, and rarely has to do overnight turns even mid-week. Pilots bid all sorts of lines for all sorts of reasons, and the CS100 being ‘small’ doesn’t mean it wouldn’t appeal.
      I also fly domestic US frequently. I see plenty of gray hair on pilots in 737-7s, A319s, and even CR9s or E175s.

    • Everybody in the US wants these things at the right price. Please refrain from talking about things you do not understand. Scope clauses are not about mainline pilots wanting to fly ‘big boy’ airplanes. They’re about STOPPING the airline from giving flying away to regional carriers. They just happen to limit the flying that can be given away by a certain pax count.

      Every major airline in the US is in the process of trying to fill the gap between their largest regional aircraft and smallest mainline bird like the B737 or A320. The CSeries fits this gap perfectly. Yes, they cost more to fly than a regional aircraft. But they also cost a lot less than a B737 or A320 in terms of hourly operating cost per passenger.

      Pilots are after the pay, not the prestige at mainline carriers. Many would rather fly something modern than a re-engined Boeing product from the 1960’s. When retirements at the majors picks up in coming years, Delta will already be a head of the curve with more pilots in place. It’s American and (even more so) United that will be behind the curve with pilots…

      • >Everybody in the US wants these things at the right price.

        Airbus agrees with you. Because as Boeing pointed out a FAL in Mobile makes no sense for just the Delta order.

  5. I like seeing someone pull this sort of thing off, its beyond hard.

    First all new Single Aisle (Emb. aside and they are not trans con at least admitting it) in how many years?

    Yea its going to take a while to settle in, but as Korean said, if you want to compete with LCC you better bring your best to the fight.

    The C is the best there is for its mission set and much better than the competition (if you can even call it that)

    If Delta can do it with the CS100, anyone can do it with the CS300.

    • The main reason why KoreanAir chose the C Series, is because they are more economical. +/- 22% less fuel!

  6. Someone remind me: Who said the 100 to 150 passenger market is where jets go to die? Was it Aboulafia?

      • He is an interesting commentator but not very well informed.

        He gets it right occasionally only by happenstance.

        I forget what it was but he had a horribly badly (garbage) supported view in Av Week a while back.

    • Not that I disagree with your sentiment, but we shouldn’t we wait for the C Series to actually be a success before declaring it a success?

  7. Not sure where the sweet spot will fall — CS100 looks a bit small.

    The CS500 looks like a certainty — when the A320 sorts itself out —with a MTOW at 75T and 160/5 standard 18”x 32” seats.

    The really interesting angle is the range potential of the platform — could be another A321 style disrupter if they can sweat the range out to 4,000NM nominal.

    Other element is the fuselage cross section and the work needed to expand it out to 6 wide — 4/6” of the pace if they wanted to go for it.

    Interesting to find out the capabilities of the supply chain — 16 a month must be the medium term target.

    • The CS300ER is an interesting study, you need more fuel and probably a A330neo type of blended wing extension.
      PWA could increase the fan diameter 1-2″ to 75″ within the same nacelle o.d. and hence get 1.25% better sfc and +2000lbf more thrust.
      There is a risk it would be a great biz jet and compete with the Global 7000.
      If Airbus thinks it is great they can pay PWA/PWC to be exclusive on the PW1500G2 engine for 10 years forcing Embraer/Boeing to use the present PW1900G. In the mean time redesign the CS300 to get cost out and make it ready for high volume production down in Mobile. GE might complain that it is too similar name to their C2 but that will just put more attention to the G2 that also might be a B-52 reengine option.

      • Once wings are full of fuel, and need more range ?
        Just add a optional fuselage tank. All the big guys do it for those extra nm.

        • That is the Quick and Dirty Solution. Don’t know how much cargo space that can be taken for fuel on a long range flight where most pax bring luggage.

          • Longer range, lower seat density, less pax and luggage, space for aux tank/s.

    • The most successful derivatives are one of two types:
      * Simple fuselage stretch/shrinks keeping MTW the same. The larger versions will have shorter range and worse field performance.
      * Fuselage stretch/shrinks and growing MTW on the stretches. This can keep performance the same on the stretches but results in a cascade of changes (engines, gear, brakes, wing mods etc) that need to be carefully managed so as not to get out of control. Also means less commonality.

      The CS100/300 and 787 9/10 and coming changes to 787-8 represent approach 1. The Embraer E2 series is approach 2.

      Different fuselage diameter is a new aircraft with all that implies.

      • Again, someone much wiser than me, has pointed out “Shrinks don’t work”. (I’m still trying to remember who it was. Scott, any idea?) It does seem, in actual practice, it’s “the stretches” that are the successes, probably at least going back in the jet age to the 707 series. Though, there might be a little argument that the 720 was a successful (?) shrink?

        • @Montana: There were only 154 720s built vs 1,010 707s, or 15%. One can argue whether, in the context of the times, 154 sales was “successful.” What the 720 probably did do, however, was support 707 sales and probably prevented some airlines from ordering a different equipment type. Also, it established Boeing as having a “family” of airplanes, leading to the 727. So while perhaps on a stand-alone basis, the 720 likely wasn’t a “success” in the traditional sense, from a tactical and strategic sense, it certainly can be so labeled.

          That said–the 737-600, A318, A310, 747SP, L-1011-500 and MD-87 (for example) sold poorly (fewer than 100 planes). The 737-500 was a modest success and the A319 was a solid success.

          • Thanks so much, Scott. 154 is really not bad, for the time period it was built. I like your summary of it very much. On the other question, was it you, or do you know, who put out there “Shrinks don’t work”?

          • @Montery: “Shrinks don’t work” is an industry conclusion. I don’t know the originator.

        • Montana –

          Perhaps shrink/stretch is the wrong way to think of it. But there are several 3 member families where all 3 sizes see success.

          787 8/9/10 (I have no doubt the 10 will be successful)
          737 max 8/9/10; max 7 we’ll see

          The thinking now seems to be to optimize for one size and then build either side of it.

          • Thanks, jbeeko, but I don’t think the current thinking is really “build on either side” of the original. The first two Boeing families you’ve noted are both really successful on “up-gauges”. The jury is out on the Max 7, but I don’t think it’s looking good! (BA’s gotta hope SW comes through, like they say they will—eventually!) The Airbus family you’ve noted doesn’t mention the A318, which was in the family originally (“unsuccessful member”), but dropped from the Neos!

          • Montana

            I deliberately left off the double shrink 318 which actually came last:

            A320 first delivery 1988
            A321 1994
            A319 1996
            A318 came last in 2003. As a double shrink design.

            If you wanted to make a rule of thumb I’d say from a given optimized design you can do a single shrink/stretch and often a double stretch.

            A double shrink does not work because while performance may better the small size destroys the economics. In the case of the A318 one niche market is London City to New York where the field performance is needed. A double (or dare I suggest it tripple) stretch is usually possible because while performance suffers economics can get better.

            The optimized design is not necessarily the first model. For example the CS300 is the optimized design and the CS100 is a shrink. In the case of the SuperJet the 100 is the largest of the envisioned family.

            I’d love to know if the 787-8 is the optimized design. I suspect the it is a shrink design and the 787-9 is the optimized member of the family.

          • The A318 was created to kill the MD-95, as was the 737-600. LCY was merely a side benefit for the A318.

  8. cseries & ejets can make smaller markets profitable on point to point flights. scope clauses are stoppung legacy airlines from changing their models, but low cost carriers will change the game. there is a reason airbus & boeing have moved into this segment

    • Please let me know when Spirit, Frontier, and/or Allegiant get “on board”!

        • In fact, once again, if we take a forward-looking perspective, we can imagine that Spirit, and even Jet Blue, will eventually buy CS100 and CS300 to not only develop a regional market to power their largest single aisle, but they can become major players in regional aviation and compete with Skywest & Co. The consequence can be dramatic: it will make the Scope Clause obsolete and push the three major airlines to completely review their strategy regarding, in fact, the inter-regional market. So we imagine, suddenly, a frantic race to buy as soon as possible a lot of CSeries.

  9. Otherwise, on May 3, there will be Bombardier’s shareholders meeting and the release of the financial statements for the last quarter. We can expect a series of news about the marriage between Airbus and Bombardier, expected in late May. But the big show of colorful smoke will take place in Farnborough. A colorful show because there will undoubtedly be a double official announcement: the partnership between Airbus / Bombardier and Boeing / Embraer. One can imagine that there will be order announcements to support, illustrate, show that one or the other of the partnerships is known to be a great commercial success. The sales managers of the four companies are probably working very hard to make letters of intent and orders. The opposite would be a very negative signal to the market. Finally, we must expect a complete absorption of the name “CSeries” by Airbus. Bets are open on new names. The competition (AirIns …) has decided, or almost: Airbus Bombardier Canada (ABC) will sell A201 and A203 … And you? What do you think ?

    • What you say could come to fruition. It seems like the greater majority of opinions associated with the AB/BBD merger are positive and could lead to some game-changing operations in the airline business. Occasionally, someone expresses or posts a negative view like AB will ultimately downplay the BBD planes. Hopefully, AB will advance the technology that is more efficient, less polluting and safer when you consider modern Air Traffic Control.

  10. Can see AB’s focus with C-series in the medium term to be production and sales.

    The 320’s wing is now ~27 years old, on the single aisle front a new wing with higher fuel capacity could be the key priority.

    An 320+(“Super”) with such a wing could prove what the market wants where the 321 is to big and 320 to small. With MTOW of ~90T and 30Klb engines this could be a good “all purpose aircraft.

    • You’re on to something here…

      In terms of new production, the A319 is dead. The upcoming CS500 will begin to infringe on the bottom of the A320NEO aircraft, especially with its better CASM. There’s still a sizable gap in size between the A320 and A321.

      What’s the best way to strengthen the Airbus product line? Launch the A320+, sized perfectly between the CS500 and A321. It will need at least 2 or 3 more rows of economy seats to do this.

      For all the naysayers out there, the CS500 (though not in existence yet) is EXACTLY WHY Airbus was so interested in the CSeries.

      • Well, Boeing for sure. That is interested in killing it because of the potential of the CSeries 500. Airbus, we’ll see. Hopefully, this is why. But to keep it all in perspective, Boeing and Airbus have, what about 10,000 orders for planes in this approximate size? Time will tell where their priorities lie. Maybe the airline companies and certain governments will push them to make this plane…

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