Russian Government To Get More VIP Widebodies

 - September 28, 2012, 8:19 AM
The Russian government is growing its Special Air Detachment fleet with two more VIP-configured Ilyushin Il-96 widebodies.

The Vaso factory of Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. (UAC) is completing a pair of VIP-equipped Ilyushin Il-96 jets under a contract from the Russian government worth approximately $333 million. Both of the four-engined aircraft will be used by the office of Russian President Vladimir Putin and operated by the country’s Special Air Detachment. 

One of the special models—designated Il-96-300PU-M—is set to be delivered in November, with the second to follow in late 2013.

The Voronezh-based facility, which has just celebrated its 80th anniversary, is also working on two more special versions of the Il-96-300, but neither the value or intended customer for these aircraft have been disclosed. Last year, Vaso did a major repair and refit of an existing Il-96 under contract to leasing group Ilyushin Finance Co., which delivered the aircraft to the the Russian president’s administration, for which it will be operated by the government flight department.

An Il-96 is Russian government livery was seen adjacent to the static display area of this week’s Jet Expo show at Moscow’s Vnukovo Airport.