JAL to Take E170s; E195 Customer Revealed

 - March 26, 2007, 10:03 AM

Japan Airlines said it will order 10 Embraer E170s and place an option on another five airplanes this spring.  The airline plans to place the airplanes with its J-Air regional subsidiary next year in a bid to “help JAL meet the business chances in and after FY2009 resulting from increased slots due to the expansion of Tokyo’s Haneida airport.” The sale would mark Embraer’s entrée into Japan and come as a serious blow to Bombardier, whose 50-seat CRJ200 serves as the sole type in J-Air’s nine-aircraft fleet.
While JAL exhibited no qualms about telegraphing its intentions, one of the first customers for Embraer’s largest jet, the E195, finally gave the Brazilian company permission to reveal its identity last month after keeping quiet for the better part of a year. Italian low-fare carrier Alpi Eagles plans to upgrade its Fokker 100 fleet with at least five E195s in single-class, 122-seat configuration, a firm order for which it placed during last year’s Farnborough Air Show. Alpi Eagles also holds an option on five more E195s and so-called purchase rights on another six.