The first Embraer ERJ-145 built in the People’s Republic of China rolled out of its assembly hangar on December 16 in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, and flew for the first time in front of industry and government dignitaries from the host country and Brazil.
Brazil’s OceanAir Aéreo and Canada’s Bombardier have announced a joint venture that will increase the airplane manufacturer’s exposure in Brazil. Beginning next year OceanAir will become the official representative of Bombardier and will be responsible for selling and promoting its aircraft in Brazil. OceanAir said it would invest $15 million in a new maintenance center, the location of which has yet to be determined.
Brazilian jet manufacturer Embraer has secured a so-called provisional certification from the FAA for the Embraer 170, allowing launch customer US Airways to begin proving runs with the airplane before it wins full FAA certification, now scheduled for next month. The announcement came just weeks after Brazil’s CTA granted similar certification for the 70-seat jet.
Pilatus and Piaggio were among the first business aviation OEMs to disclose 2004 deliveries, and the numbers show an improvement over 2003. Pilatus reported it shipped 70 PC-12s last year compared with 61 in 2003. The Swiss manufacturer recently celebrated its 500th PC-12 delivery. Piaggio said it delivered 16 Avantis last year versus 12 in 2003. Meanwhile, Embraer reported delivering 13 Legacy business jets last year, the same as in 2003.
The annual European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE) will
Embraer this spring expects to complete certification that will increase the service ceiling of the Legacy business jet from FL370 to FL410. Later this year, Embraer will introduce an optional Chelton data system that will boost the Legacy’s high-speed connectivity from the current 128 kbps to 432 kbps. A new cabin LED lighting system and pleated mechanical window shades are also scheduled to be integrated into the Legacy later this year.
Bombardier’s newly constituted board of directors last month gave approval to the company’s commercial airplane division to offer the C Series line of single-aisle jets to potential customers, marking the start of the company’s foray into the major airline market.
At the request of launch customer JetBlue, Embraer has introduced longer-range versions of its 190 and 195 E-Jets. Designated with the suffix AR (advanced range), the airplanes will carry structural reinforcements that allow for higher max takeoff and landing weights. The changes will add as much as 300 nm of range, allowing the 190 to fly as far as 2,300 nm and the 195 to fly as far as 2,100 nm.
MSA Aircraft Products of San Antonio has introduced its Accordia pleated window shade systems for the Embraer Legacy, Gulfstream 200 (as well as an Accordia ultra-light window assembly for all Gulfstreams), Piaggio Avanti and Learjet 35.
Four Embraer Legacy Executive twinjets have joined Cleveland-based fractional operator Flight Options to provide owners with a large-cabin aircraft to supplement the company’s Challenger 601 and Gulfstream IV fleets, as well as allowing Hawker 800XP owners to upgrade. The Legacy Executive is an eight- to 13-passenger business jet version of the Brazilian manufacturer’s ERJ-135 regional jet.