2 MARCH 2015
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Bombardier's CS300, the larger version of its new CSeries jet, took off on its first test flight at the Canadian company's testing and assembly facility near Montreal on Friday. This, Bombardier's largest commercial aircraft, with up to 160 seats, takes the company into markets dominated by Boeing and Airbus. (See also BTN 16 February)
Alain Bellemare, Bombardier's new Chief Executive, said that the company remains committed to having the plane certified by the end of 2015, but that it could go into service a few weeks into 2016, depending on decisions made by customers. He played down the impact of delays.
"These are long-term programmes," Bellemare said. "Clearly we want to be on schedule, but when you have a one- or two-year delay that doesn't materially change the volume that you will get in the marketplace."
Bellemare took the helm earlier this month after Bombardier suspended dividends and laid out plans to raise US$2bn amid more cost overruns on the CSeries.
Bombardier has touted the CSeries' fuel economy as a key selling point, an advantage lessened by lower oil prices. Of the 243 orders for the CSeries the vast majority (180) are for the larger Dash 300 aircraft. http://cseries.com/category/cseries-program-update
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