The next variation of the Sukhoi Superjet 100 will almost certainly involve a stretch of the existing 95-seat baseline platform, leaving the once highly anticipated 75-seat version in a state of virtual limbo.
Sukhoi Superjet 100
If you can imagine the Paris Air Show as a stock market then what happened at this year’s event (held from June 15 to 21) was nothing less than a rally, spurred by unexpectedly strong sales activity. With the worldwide economy still in the grasp of the largest downturn since the Great Depression in the 1930s, most observers had predicted slim pickings at this year’s show.
For one week at least, the gloom of the global recession seemed to lift along with the storm clouds gathered over the grounds of the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget, France. An unexpected flurry of sales activity gave the air transport market in particular a welcome boost, as contracts for firm orders, options, letters of intent and memoranda of understanding totalled close to $17 billion.
Russian aircraft lessor Avialeasing yesterday converted a letter of intent for 24 Sukhoi Superjet 100 regional airliners signed at last July’s Farnborough airshow into a firm order valued at $715 million. Scheduled for delivery between 2011 and 2013, the airplanes are destined for Avialeasing customer airlines.
Sukhoi’s new Superjet 100 airliner is making a triumphant international debut here at the Paris Air Show. For the program’s Russian and Italian partners, the Le Bourget stage is an ideal setting to signal to the market that the twinjet has got back on track after some technical delays, with first deliveries now set to happen before year-end.
Although heartened by the turnout at last month’s Regional Airline Association Convention, held May 18 to 21 at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, the RAA could do nothing to lift the pall that the NTSB hearings on the February 12 crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 and the generally gloomy economic environment would cast over the annual event.
Despite the current economic crisis and the absence of two major U.S. business jet manufacturers (Gulfstream and Cessna), organizers of the Paris Air Show have said that this year’s event will not be down significantly in size compared with years past, when the industry has been more buoyant.
Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. plans to display one of the two Superjet 100s now involved in flight testing at the June 15 to 21 Paris Air Show, just around the time the program’s third test article makes its planned maiden flight, according to Alessandro Franzoni, CEO of the program’s Venice, Italy-based marketing and support arm, Superjet International.
The Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) has issued EASA/ENAC Part 145 certification to Venice, Italy-based Superjet International, allowing the regional jet marketing and support unit for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 to carry out maintenance, completion and customization activities. Plans call for Superjet International’s maintenance base in Venice to install the Superjet 100’s interiors and optional equipment.
EASA pilots have performed the first familiarization flights on Sukhoi Superjet 100 S/Ns 95001 and 95003, Superjet International announced today.