Fast-growing Russian leasing group Ilyushin Finance Co. (ILC) is targeting the Middle East market with a portfolio of five airliners that could exploit the increasingly blurred lines between traditional regional air transport fleets and new-generation narrowbodies.
Sukhoi Superjet 100
Two Sukhoi Superjet 100s operated by the Mexican airline Interjet performed their inaugural revenue flights on Wednesday, marking the first appearance of the Russian regional jets in commercial service in the Americas. Using SSJ100 MSN 95023, Interjet Flight 3153 took off at 7:37 a.m. local time from Mexico City (MEX) and landed at 8:54 a.m. in Torreon (TRC).
Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company has produced the first VIP version of its new Superjet SSJ-100 airliner. The first example of the Sukhoi Business Jet was on display at last month’s MAKS airshow in Moscow. It is due to go to Russian defense export agency Rosoboronexport by year-end. This aircraft is based on the standard SSJ-100 model but future SBJs will be based on the long-range version of the narrowbody.
Russian civil aerospace executives might remember last week’s Moscow Air Show (MAKS ’13) at Zhukovsky Air Field outside the Russian capital as the start of their industry’s ascent toward global relevance.
Three separate contracts executed by Sukhoi Civil Aircraft (SCAC) over the past two days at the Moscow Air Show (MAKS) have added as many as 31 aircraft to the manufacturer’s Superjet 100 backlog and expanded its coverage among leasing companies.
Sukhoi Civil Aircraft (SCAC) last Thursday gained Russian certification of a long-range version of the Superjet 100 known as the SSJ100-95LR, following 115 hours of testing during 60 flights since February 15. Five percent more thrust generated by the airplane’s Powerjet SaM146 turbofans and strengthened wings increase the airplane’s range to 2,472 nm from 1,590 and maximum takeoff weight to 109,109 pounds from 101,150.
The launch customer for the $50 million Sukhoi Business Jet has decided not to complete the first two aircraft and could back out of its deal to buy the aircraft altogether. Just when the first SBJ will be placed into service is now uncertain as Sukhoi and Italian partner Alenia toil to make deliveries to airline clients after fitting the aircraft with numerous upgrades, including a revamped passenger cabin by the Italian design house Pininfarina.
None of the five people aboard a Sukhoi Superjet 100 was injured on July 21 when the aircraft landed gear-up during an early-morning approach at Iceland’s Reykjavík-Keflavík International Airport (BIRK). The Russian aircraft had departed Reykjavik at just after 4 a.m. local time on a training flight and was conducting an approach to Runway 11 when it executed a go-around and a circuit over the sea before returning to land.
Sunday’s incident involving a Sukhoi Superjet 100 in which the airplane landed with its gear retracted at Keflavik International Airport in Iceland will not affect operations of any in-service SSJ100s, the Russian manufacturer said in a statement released Monday.
Mexican airline Interjet is set to become the first Western operator of Sukhoi’s SuperJet SSJ100 during July. The first of 20 aircraft it has on order arrived from Russia in Interjet colors at last week’s Paris Air Show, before heading to the Venice, Italy, headquarters of the airframer’s SuperJet International joint venture with Alenia Aermacchi. There it will undergo final preparations for final delivery to Mexico, with a second SSJ100 due to follow just a few days behind it.