Singapore Air Show

Bombardier Foresees Strong Need for 60- to 150-Seat Transports

 - February 6, 2018, 10:14 PM

Driven by rising GDP and a rapid expansion of the middle class, the Asia-Pacific region, exclusive of China, is expected take delivery of 2,050 aircraft in the 60- to 150-seat category over the next 20 years, according to a 2017-2036 market forecast released by Bombardier Commercial Aircraft (Chalet CD55) at the Singapore Airshow 2018. The figure includes 1,050 large regional aircraft (50 to 100 seats) and 1,000 small single-aisle aircraft, and represents 16 percent of Bombardier’s foreseen worldwide market for such aircraft (a total of 12,550), with a projected value of $820 billion.

Bombardier expects improving regional economics to triple passenger traffic over the forecast period.

Asia-Pacific will see “compound annual growth of six percent GDP, and will boost the region’s economy from $3 trillion in 2016 to more than $8 trillion in 20 years' time,” said Ross McKeand, Bombardier’s head of marketing, Asia-Pacific and China.

Small and medium-size cities with challenging airports will likely see the largest traffic growth, Bombardier says, and by 2036, most of the demand will be for short haul flights of less than 500 nm.

Currently, more than 60 percent of all routes in the region have demand for less than 150 passengers per day, but as demand gradually rises and passengers seek more frequency of service, providing it with the larger single-aisle jets currently employed will prove uneconomical, McKeand said.

The Canadian airframer sees itself as uniquely positioned to offer aircraft suitable for the region’s expansion: It’s Q400 turboprops, CRJ regional jets, and CSeries small single-aisle jets, whose capacities span this segment.

More than 40 airlines in Asia-Pacific are now operating a total of 330 Bombardier regional and small single-aisle aircraft: 50 CRJs are flying with 13 operators; Korean Air, the region’s launch customer for the C Series, has ordered 10 CS300s with an option for 10 more, and has taken delivery of two. A CS300 operated by Air Baltic, launch customer for the platform, is on static display at the show. The Latvia-based airline, recently named first in punctuality in 2017 by OAG analysts, has seen a 22 perccent reduction in fuel savings over the B737-300s the airline fies on the same routes, CEO Martin Gauss said here. Fully 260 of Bombardier commercial aircraft in the region are Q400 turboprops. India’s SpiceJet is the launch customer for the new 90-seat Q400, having placed an order for up to 50 of them.

Meanwhile, making its debut in the Asia Pacific region, Bombardier Business Aircraft is showing on static a Global 6000 with the new Premier interior, based on the cabin elements of the forthcoming Global 7000. "Over the years there's been a lot of demand for Globals in the Asia Pacific region," said Nilesh Pattanayak, regional vice president, Asia Pacific business aircraft. "The Premier cabin is giving it a little boost."