The March 2014 merger that created Textron Aviation brought together three deeply rooted brands, Beechcraft, Cessna and Hawker, and, at least for now, the group is committed to maintaining the separate identities of these product families. That's not to say the company will not contemplate changes in its line up, with Textron Aviation senior vice president of sales and marketing, Kriya Shortt, acknowledging that it is “evaluating our product line to ensure we’re bringing the best possible products to customers around the world .”
Embraer E-Jet family
Embraer started fabricating parts for its new E190-E2 on Friday, when it cut metal on the first prototype’s wing stub forward pressure bulkhead at its Évora plant in Portugal.
“The production of this first part, on schedule, is an important milestone in all aviation programs, marking the transition from the project stage to beginning the manufacturing phase of the airplanes,” said Embraer Commercial Aviation CEO Paulo Cesar Silva. “There is still a long road ahead, until it actually enters service, but we harbor no doubts as to whether we will deliver to the market the most efficient, modern and robust aircraft in this segment, as well as a very comfortable cabin for passengers.”
A series of new order announcements involving no fewer than three major civil airframe makers signaled the end of a late-summer sales lull on Wednesday, as airlines went on a new buying spree reminiscent of July’s Farnborough airshow. The value of the week'sday’s orderss totaled some $11.37.45 billion at list prices and involved 11886 airplanes ranging in size from the Embraer E175 regional jet to the Boeing 787-9 widebody.
Indianapolis-based Republic Airways plans to consolidate its Chautauqua Airlines operation into its Shuttle America subsidiary in an effort to cut costs through a reduction of its air operator certificates to two from three. Company CEO Bryan Bedford sent a letter to employees in late July announcing the company’s intention to migrate Chautauqua’s 41 fifty-seat Embraer ERJ-145s to Shuttle America by year-end.
Embraer has finished roughly half of its series of critical design reviews (CDRs) for the new E190-E2, and as of early September had released drawings for major parts of the airplane’s all-new wings.
Two manufacturers shared the spoils of Japan Airlines’ major commitment announced last week covering a total of 47 regional jets. But the potentially bigger and undoubtedly more desperate winner proved to be Mitsubishi, the upstart regional jet manufacturer whose orderbook now shows memoranda of understanding, tentative agreements and firm orders from six customers.
Embraer has signed Tianjin Airlines, the first E190 Chinese operator and the largest E-Jet carrier in Asia, as the launch user in China for the manufacturer’s Ahead-Pro (Aircraft Health Analysis and Diagnosis-Prognosis) system. The contract calls for Embraer to install the system in all 50 of Tianjin Airlines’ E-Jets.
Trans States Holdings subsidiary Compass Airlines has won the right to fly 20 new 76-seat Embraer E175s owned by American Airlines, the first of which the regional airline expects to add to its fleet in the first quarter of next year. Under the terms of a new code-share deal with American, Trans States will fly the airplanes as American Eagle from a hub yet to be announced.
“We are currently evaluating where the new E175s that will be operated by Compass will be deployed and will share that information at a later date,” said American Airlines in a written statement.
Aurigny, the airline of Guernsey in the Channel Islands, took delivery of its first jet–a 122-seat Embraer E195–early last month. The airline ordered one aircraft to help protect the air services the island lost when low-cost carrier Flybe announced it would pull out of the lifeline Gatwick-Guernsey route. The new aircraft operates four round trips a day, every day of the week.
The Embraer jet cuts flight time to 35 minutes from the 45 minutes it took the ATR 72s that previously operated on the route.
Embraer has announced a string of orders this week here at Farnborough International 2014, for a total of 158 regional jets (if all options were exercised). The most prominent one came from Trans States Holdings, the parent company of Trans States Airlines, Compass Airlines and GoJet Airlines, for 50 E175-E2 airliners, plus an option for an additional 50. Its first E175 is expected to enter service in 2020.
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