Tag Archives: C Series

Swiss Opts for More CS300s

Swiss International Airlines has revealed it is converting its five remaining options for the Bombardier C Series to the larger CS300.

The company, which was the launch customer for the CS100, will eventually operate a fleet of ten CS100s and 20 CS300s. Swiss says new aircraft deliveries will reduce the average age of its fleet from 12.5 years to 8.5 years by the end of 2018.

The Star Alliance carrier is also investing CHF100m in refurbishing its five remaining Airbus A340s and launching a programme to introduce inflight connectivity to its medium- and short-haul fleets next year.

“By the end of next year we will have one of Europe’s most advanced and efficient aircraft fleets,” explained Thomas Klühr, Swiss’ CEO.

Investments will also be made at the airline’s Zurich Airport hub. A new First Class Lounge will be introduced on the Check-In 1 concourse by the end of the year providing guests with their own security checkpoint and a dedicated walkway to their limousine transport. The 650m2 facility will also have an à la carte restaurant, a staffed bar and an area equipped with workstations and showers.

The Business Class and Senator Lounges in Terminal A will be refurbished with work scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2018. These investments total more than CHF15m.

“Our new premium product on the ground will offer our customers genuinely new levels of air travel comfort and convenience,” explained Klühr.

This news came on the back of a strong financial year for Swiss in 2016. The carrier reported earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of CHF429m.  “All in all, Swiss can look back on a very successful 2016,” said Klühr.  “We are in sound financial health, and we will continue to invest in our premium air travel product, for the benefit of our customers.”

The carrier warned it expects to post an EBIT for 2017 “slightly below” its 2016 level. It attributed this to the “challenging competitive environment, the strength of the Swiss franc, the present geopolitical uncertainties and the recent tangible increase in the price of oil”.

Air Tanzania to Get C Series

Dar es Salaam-based Air Tanzania will add two Bombardier CS300 airliners to its fleet after the Tanzanian Government Flight Agency (TGFA) signed a firm purchase agreement with the manufacturer. Also included in the deal is a Q400 turboprop.

The three aircraft, which have a combined value of $200m, will be leased and operated by Air Tanzania. Two Q400s entered service with the carrier earlier this year, flying domestic and regional services.

The Q400 will feature a 76-seat all-economy configuration while the CS300 will be in a two-class layout and equipped with WiFi and in-flight entertainment.

“The domestic market in Tanzania as well as the regional market are becoming more competitive as both business and leisure travel are steadily increasing,” said Dr Leonard Chamuriho, Permanent Secretary at Tanzania’s Ministry of Works, Communications and Transport. “Therefore it is vital to operate aircraft that offer superb passenger comfort and amenities.  Of course, high reliability, operational flexibility, as well as excellent fuel efficiency and economics are also necessary.  Both the Q400 and CS300 aircraft more than satisfy these parameters.”

Jean-Paul Boutibou, Vice President, Sales, Africa and the Middle East, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, added: “We are delighted that the Q400 aircraft which entered service with Air Tanzania earlier this year are proving their superior economics and versatility. The CS300 aircraft will allow Air Tanzania to expand both its domestic and regional markets, and it has the range to open new international destinations such as the Middle East and India at the lowest cost.  The C Series jet aircraft have the right attributes to develop these markets.”

Bombardier says this deal takes its recorded firm orders for the Q400 to 566 and the C Series to 360.

Amsterdam Debut for airBaltic CS300

Launch carrier airBaltic will debut the new Bombardier CS300 on its Riga to Amsterdam connection on December 14.

Martin Gauss, CEO of airBaltic said: “CS300 is a great aircraft, and a great improvement for our customers this Christmas.  We are delighted to announce that the historic first airBaltic commercial flight with Bombardier CS300 will link Riga with Amsterdam.”

The first CS300 for airBaltic at Bombardier's Mirabel plant. Bombardier
The first CS300 for airBaltic at Bombardier’s Mirabel plant. Bombardier

Flight BT619 departs Riga at 1625hrs arriving at Schiphol at 1750hrs.  The return service, BT620, departs the Dutch city at 1855hrs arriving back in Latvia at 2210hrs.

The Riga-based airline is expected to take delivery of its first of 20 examples in early December, with the 145-seat aircraft planned to make its UK debut at Gatwick on January 7.

airBaltic CEO Martin Gauss and Bombardier's Rob Dewar. Bombardier
airBaltic CEO Martin Gauss and Bombardier’s Rob Dewar. Bombardier

 

Bombardier Adjusts C Series Delivery Schedule

Delays in the suuply of Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower PW1500G engine have led Bombardier to revise its C Series delivery schedule.

The Canadian manufacturer had planned to hand over 15 aircraft by the end of the year but this has been adjusted to seven.

“The C Series engine is performing very well in service.  We are working very closely with Pratt & Whitney to quickly address this supplier ramp-up issue and to ensure we have a strong supplier base to support our long-term growth objectives,” explained Fred Cromer, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.  “We are very confident in our production ramp-up plan, including our ability to meet our production goal of 90 to 120 aircraft per year by 2020.”

Bombardier has handed over two CS100s to Swiss with a third due for delivery next month.  The manufacturer says the first example of the larger CS300 remains on track to be delivered to launch operator airBaltic in the fourth quarter.

The two aircraft in service with Swiss have flown nearly 400 revenue flights, totalling almost 600 flight hours, and Cromer says their performance has been good.

“We are very pleased with the performance of the C Series during its entry-into-service with our launch customer Swiss,” he revealed.  “The aircraft is meeting all expectations and clearly demonstrating that it is the best performing and most efficient aircraft in the 100- to 150-seat class.”

Last week, Bombardier confirmed that it had received the second and final $500m instalment of the Government of Québec’s investment in the C Series programme.

Green Light for London City Expansion

Government approval has been granted for London City Airport’s £344m transformation project.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, confirmed that planning permission had been granted for the City Airport Development Programme (CADP), which includes the construction of seven new aircraft stands, a parallel taxiway and an extension to the passenger terminal. London City Airport welcomed a record-breaking 4.3 million passengers last year and says the transformation will enable 6.5 million people to use the airport by 2025.

The planning decision was formally approved by the Transport Secretary Chris Grayling and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid.

A statement on the airport’s website said the expansion also “opens up the possibility of more destination choice, with quieter, more fuel efficient, ‘next generation’ aircraft unlocking the opportunity to fly greater distances to destinations in the Gulf and Middle East, Turkey, Russia and the east coast of the United States”. Bombardier recently confirmed that its new CS100 airliner could fly 2,350nm from the Docklands airport, enabling the aircraft to fly non-stop to Moscow or Cairo.

London City Airport estimates that the expansion will create 1,600 airport jobs together with 500 construction jobs. The CADP could potentially contribute £1.5 billion to the UK economy by 2025.

As part of the project, the airport will invest £2.6m in additional rolling stock for the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) as well as funding improvements to the roads, paths and cycle routes leading to the site.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond said: “London City Airport’s ambitious growth plans will boost international connections, strengthening the City of London’s links to destinations across the world, and send a clear signal that Britain is open for business. Making it easier to visit and do business in the City of London will help drive forward our economy and further strengthen the city’s status as the world’s leading financial centre.  This is a real vote of confidence in the resilience of our economy, creating over a thousand new jobs.”

The government says London City Airport will provide a “generous” compensation package to local residents affected by the increase in air traffic.

C Series Fuels Network Growth for airBaltic

Bombardier CS300 launch operator airBaltic will begin direct flights from Riga to Abu Dhabi as part of a network expansion facilitated by the new aircraft.

The Latvian carrier will receive six of its 20 CS300s this year, with the first due for delivery in October and Chief Executive Officer Martin Gauss explained that while the jets will be phased in gradually they will cover the entire network “sooner or later”.

One of the challenges airBaltic gave Bombardier was to enable direct flights between the airline’s Riga base and Abu Dhabi, a journey of 2,338nm (4,333km).  At the Farnborough International Airshow, Rob Dewar, Vice President CSeries Aircraft Program, confirmed that the range for airBaltic out of Riga was 2,469nm (4,573km).  Amongst the host of new services the airline is looking to introduce are links from Riga to Manchester, Dublin and Reykjavik.

“The CS300 will enable us to serve destinations which we were not able to in the past.  We can use the aircraft on all destinations airBaltic has, even on the short ones,” Gauss told journalists during a CS300 briefing at Farnborough.  Gauss told Airliner World that flights to Abu Dhabi would not start this year.  “We will decide when we come to the schedule and planning over the next year.”  He said that the link to Abu Dhabi would be a “normal flight” and that turnaround times would be no different to the airline’s current operations.

As part of its mission to become a pan-Baltic carrier, the airline is also operating flights from Tallinn in Estonia and Vilnius in Lithuania and these will also be served by the C Series.

With the first aircraft due to be delivered in October, focus is switching to the CS300’s entry into service (EIS) and Gauss is aware that there will be a lot of attention placed on both the manufacturer and the carrier.  The airBaltic CEO said that there was no formal agreement in place with CS100 launch operator Swiss but the two airlines were exchanging information during the EIS phase.

No announcement has been made on which destinations the CS300 will serve first.  “We are finalising it and we will announce it in September, together with Bombardier,” Gauss told Airliner World.  “We can fly to any destination but for the entry into service of course there is a lot of demand.”

The airline’s aircraft will be fitted with 145 seats and a curtain will be used to divide the Business and Economy cabins.  Gauss revealed airBaltic’s jets would feature Bombardier’s built-in in-flight entertainment system enabling the carrier to provide passengers with gate information, a moving map, safety demonstration videos and other customisable content.  He confirmed that the airline would introduce Wi-Fi to the CS300 but that it wasn’t fitted on the initial example.

Heathrow Set to Welcome SWISS C Series

Swiss International Air Lines plans to introduce its new fleet of Bombardier CS100 airliners on flights between Zurich and London Heathrow this winter.

From November 16 until December 10, the launch operator will fly the Canadian-built jet into London on Saturdays, routesonline reports.  From then until January 4, the CS100 will operate into the UK gateway on Wednesdays only.

Services between Zurich and Birmingham will feature the CS100 between six and seven times a week by December 18 and Manchester, one of the type’s first scheduled destinations, will retain a weekly C Series service when the winter timetable comes into force.

Swiss is scheduled to take delivery of nine CS100s by the end of the year.

EASA and FAA Validation for CS100

Bombardier’s CS100 airliner has been awarded European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Type Validation following a comprehensive testing program.  The EASA and FAA awards follow Transport Canada’s Type Certification last December.

Validation from EASA enables Bombardier to deliver the first aircraft to launch operator Swiss International Air Lines at the end of the month.  The CS100 is due to enter service with the carrier in mid-July.

Robert Dewar, Vice President, C Series Program, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, said: “In the same week that our C Series aircraft surpassed 5,000 flight hours and the first SWISS aircraft readies for its first flight, we are celebrating another very proud moment with the receipt of the CS100 aircraft EASA and FAA Type Validations.  I congratulate our teams for all their hard work in delivering these latest significant accomplishments.

“As we move quickly towards the delivery of the first CS100 aircraft to SWISS, we are gratified that several aviation leaders are confirming what we have been saying all along — the C Series aircraft will open up new opportunities for operators, while delivering unrivalled economic advantages, performance, and environmental credentials.”

François Caza, Vice President, Product Development and Chief Engineer and Head of Bombardier’s Design Approval Organization, added: “Obtaining the CS100 aircraft Type Validations from EASA and the FAA marks one of the final chapters in our very successful test program.  Achieving these latest milestones is a direct result of the quality of the work by our highly skilled employees who were involved in the program as well as from the solid collaboration we established with our suppliers.”

Swiss Signs Up for Smart Parts

Swiss International Air Lines has selected Bombardier’s Smart Parts Program to provide component support for the it’s incoming fleet of 30 C Series airliners.  Under the terms of the ten-year agreement the Canadian manufacturer will provide the Swiss carrier with comprehensive component maintenance, repair and overhaul services, access to a strategically located spare part exchange pool and an on-site inventory based at the airline’s main hub in Zurich.  Swiss is the launch operator for the C Series, with the first CS100 aircraft scheduled to be delivered by Bombardier in June.

Peter Wojahn, Chief Technical Officer, Swiss International Air Lines commented: “As we approach entry-into-service with our CS100, we have selected Bombardier as our component services supplier – strengthening our relationship even further.  The Smart Parts Program will guarantee part availability and provide is with a cost-effective solution to our component maintenance and spare part requirements.  This will enable us to secure a successful entry into service and to operate our fleet of C Series aircraft to its full potential, while reducing maintenance-related costs and our own investment into spare components.”

Delta Boost for C Series

Delta Air Lines has delivered a major boost to Canadian manufacturer Bombardier after signing a firm order for 75 CS100s.  The deal, valued at $5.6 billion at list prices, also includes a further 50 purchase options and is the largest commitment for the type to date.

Announcing the order on April 28, Delta’s incoming CEO Ed Bastian said: “As we reshape our fleet for the future, the innovative on-board experience of the C Series is a perfect complement for the top-notch service provided every day by Delta people.” He continued: “These new aircraft are a solid investment, allowing us to take advantage of superior operating economics, network flexibility and best-in-class fuel performance.”

Fred Cromer, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft added: “Welcoming Delta Air Lines to the C Series family of operators is a watershed moment for our game-changing aircraft. As an industry leader, Delta consistently ranks first with customers, business leaders and its peers – a benchmark for operational performance.

(Bombardier)
(Bombardier)

“This order is a resounding endorsement of the CS100 aircraft performance and its exceptionally low operating costs. In addition, its widest aisle, widest seats and largest bins in its class will be attractive features for Delta’s passengers.”

Bombardier is yet to confirm the delivery schedule, though it is understood the US carrier will have the option to convert at least some of its order to the larger CS300.

Crucially, the Delta deal, coupled with the Air Canada commitment from early this year, extends Bombardier’s C Series order book above the company’s target of 300 orders before the type enters commercial service with Swiss International Air Lines this July. It also extends the production backlog beyond 2020, when the manufacturer predicts it will break even on the C Series programme.