Posted on: 08 March 2011 by Ross McSweeny
Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation (MJET) has confirmed that the entry into service of the MRJ family members will see the MRJ90 enter service first in 2014, to be followed by the MRJ70, and finally the MRJ100, should the stretched version be given the go-ahead to move from its current developmental MRJ100X designation.
Hank Iwasa, MJET’s VP sales and marketing, explained that the MRJ70 will be needed in the United States due to the scope clauses there. Although Trans States Holdings, which has 50 firm orders and 50 options, has not released the mix of models it will take, Iwasa admitted that the company is almost certain to take some MRJ70s.
The MRJ100X is still a likely addition to the family, but Iwasa stressed that no authority to offer has yet been given. The drive for the third family member is coming from customers in Europe.
In the time since the announcement that Trans States had firmed up its Letter of Intent, MJET has received increased interest. “It’s making some movement in the US. TSH’s competitors are looking carefully and considering how to respond. But it has given the sales effort some momentum,” Iwasa emphasised.
On the progress of the aeroplane itself, MJET president Hideo Egawa noted that last year significant progress was made. “In September, we got through the critical design review, freezing our design details. Then got into the fabrication with the first metal cutting on 30 September,” he remarked. “In April, we’ll have a ceremony to celebrate the first riveting, joining some parts together.”
Editor, Low-Fare & Regional Airlines/LARAnews.net