Posted on Wednesday 25 February 2015 by Ulster Business
The Bombardier C-300 Series in flight
The crucial first flight of Bombardier’s new mid-sized passenger jet - parts of which are made in Belfast - has been given the go-ahead.
Takeoff for the CS-300 is expected on Thursday February 26th at the company’s Quebec site, dependent weather conditions, which are currently extremely cold in the Canadian region.
The wings and nacelles, or engine covers, of the jet are made at the Canadian company’s Belfast base and the aircraft’s progress will help negate recent news of contraction at the site.
Only last week it said it was cutting 130 contract jobs in Belfast, a move which follows on from a reduction of nearly 400 workers announced last September as part of a global restructuring.
Bombardier has so far sold 243 of the C-Series jets, around 60% of the larger C-300 which carries 130-160 passengers and is being tested this week.
The rest are for the 110-seat C-100 Series which has already undergone flight trials and is expected to enter service in the latter half of this year before being followed by the CS-300 around six months later.
Development of the single aisle jet has been running behind schedule and will come as a relief to Mike Arcamone, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.
“I’m thrilled to confirm the countdown to the CS300 aircraft’s first flight is officially on and as excitement builds, our teams are readying for yet another milestone in the development of the CSeries family of aircraft.”
“We look forward to a successful flight and invite everyone to follow us as we continue on our mission to deliver the only 100 per cent-new family of aircraft. The CS300 aircraft represents two-thirds of our CSeries aircraft backlog and it offers the best seat-mile cost in its category, making it the most profitable solution for mid-sized markets with up to 150 passengers per flight, and ideal for a range of routes from short-haul to longer transcontinental markets.”