Nov. 12, 2018, © Leeham News: The writing had really been on the wall for the past few years, regardless what the corporate line was: Bombardier was one day going to sell the Q400 program or shut it down.
Better to sell it and get at least some money out of it, no matter how small.
Bombardier agreed to sell the program to British Columbia-based Viking Air for a mere $300m–$250m, net of fees.
Ditto the CRJ program. It’s on life support. It’s a design dating to the 1980s, the passenger experience has long been eclipsed by the Embraer E-Jet and it will be also by Mitsubishi’s MRJ when this jet finally comes on line in 2020. Read more
Nov. 8, 2018, © Leeham News: Bombardier today announced the sale of its slow-selling, aging Q400 turboprop program to Canada’s Viking Air.
Viking previously purchased out-of-production Bombardier/de Havilland aircraft programs, including the Twin Otter, Beaver and CL-415 firefighting bomber.
Twin Otter production was restarted. The Beaver was not an is not in the cards to be restarted. The CL-415 was limping along, and no longer a contributor to Bombardier’s cash flow and profits.
“The Company entered into definitive agreements for the sale of the Q Series aircraft program and de Havilland trademark to a wholly owned subsidiary of Longview Aviation Capital Corp. for approximately $300m,” Bombardier said in a press release. It also announced the sale of other assets for $800m. The two deals are expected to close in the second half of 2019.
The low price reflects the struggles the Q400 has had for years. Bombardier lost money on the Q400 in recent years.
Bombardier also said it is considering its options for the aging, struggling CRJ program. Read more
Oct. 22, 2018, © Leeham News: Bombardier has a firm backlog of 67 Q400 turboprops. ATR has a backlog of 256 through Oct. 20, according to the Airfinance Journal Fleet Tracker.
Bombardier has 83 CRJ jets of all models in backlog. Embraer has 442 orders for all E-Jet models. Mitsubishi has 213 firm orders for its MRJ70/90.
This is just an 11% market share for the CRJ.
These figures illustrate why the market doubts Bombardier’s long-term future in commercial aerospace.
Sept. 17, 2018, © Leeham News: With the supply chain under major stress and Airbus and Boeing trying to recover from scores of “gliders” sidelined at airports without engines, each company nevertheless continues to study production rate increases for the A320 and 737 families.
Supply chain sources tell LNC Airbus is studying an even higher rate, into the “70s,” at early as 2020—a date that most consider out of the question.
Boeing is known to be considering a rate of 70/mo for its most profitable program.
Today, LNC looks at the A320 scenario. A future post will examine the 737.
July 18, 2018, © Leeham News, Farnborough: Mitsubishi’s MRJ will be supported even if Boeing and Embraer complete a deal to form a new company in which Boeing is an 80% shareholder.
Stan Deal, CEO of Boeing Global Services, said in an interview with LNC that despite the competition, BGS will honor the Boeing commitment to Mitsubishi.
BGS already supports Airbus aircraft, which of course fiercely compete with Boeing.
Editor’s note: The Farnborough Air Show begins next week. Mitsubishi is expected to have a flying display of the MRJ90 at an international air show for the first time. This is the last of three stories from Mitsubishi’s MRJ program update in Moses Lake (WA) last month.
By Dan Catchpole
July 10, 2018, © Leeham News: An engine flameout in August 2017 that left the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) test fleet grounded for several weeks was caused by a manufacturing quality issue on a component in the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan’s accessory gearbox, according to a Mitsubishi executive.
MRJ program chief Alex Bellamy said the manufacturing quality problem caused a machined component to suffer a durability issue, leading to flameout.
By Dan Catchpole
July 3, 2018, © Leeham News: It’s been two years since a small army of Japanese aerospace workers landed in Moses Lake, a sleepy former Air Force base town in rural Central Washington. The Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp. (MAC) will be in Moses Lake for another four or five years as it nudges its new regional jets—the MRJ70 and MRJ90—into service.
The first Mitsubishi Regional Jet, the MRJ90, originally was supposed to enter into service in 2013, but myriad develop delays have dogged the sleek jet, which now is slated to deliver to launch customer All Nippon Airways in mid-2020.
By Dan Catchpole
July 3, 2018, © Leeham News: Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp. executives insist the MRJ90 is past the seemingly endless delays that have dogged its development. It is on track toward type certification and first delivery in mid-2020.
The problem is when it arrives, the 81-seat MRJ90 will be the wrong fit for the US market. Program executives praised the plane’s advanced design during media briefings at the MRJ flight test center in Moses Lake (WA), but when they spoke about market opportunity, it was for the smaller MRJ70, which is at least three years away from entering service.
Starting in 2022, Mitsubishi expects a wave of 50-seat regional jet retirements in the North American market. And North America—specifically the United States—”is the most important market for us to make this business successful,” said Yugo Fukuhara, Mitsubishi Aircraft vice president and general manager of sales and marketing.
June 25, 2018, © Leeham News: Little in the way of excitement is expected at the Farnborough Air Show next month.
Airbus continues to be coy about its response to the NMA. Studies about an A321neo Plus or Plus-Plus have been talked about almost as long as Boeing has been discussing the NMA. More recently, now there’s talk of an A321 XLR.