Bombardier announced that Transport Canada and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) awarded its CS100 its steep approach certifications. The CS100 aircraft’s capability to operate at challenging airports such as London City (LCY) Airport was validated by a comprehensive flight test program. Swiss International Air Lines will be the first airline to operate the C Series at LCY Airport.
This news is important to two other airlines using LCY. The first is British Airways which could replace its A318s which require a stop in Ireland before crossing the Atlantic westbound to JFK. The other is a UK-based startup Odyssey Airlines. The CS100 has double the range that can be flown from LCY, opening new routes for airlines and passengers.
Bombardier now has an aircraft it can pitch in a similar way that Boeing does the 787. The CS100, like the 787, has special performance capabilities. The CS100 can operate from steep approach airports and still cover a relatively long range. British Airways could use the aircraft to reach New York, but it could also reach Dubai. The combination of LCY and CS100 provide a potentially disruptive cocktail of options.
The comprehension of this cocktail of options is clearly understood by LCY officials. “The C Series is a game-changer for the only London airport actually in London, and it’s fantastic news that one of the quietest and most fuel-efficient commercial jets in its class has been granted regulatory approval. Bombardier’s next generation aircraft will unlock new routes which passengers, both business and leisure, will benefit from, with opportunities for non-stop services to destinations including the east coast of the USA, Russia, West Africa and the Middle East,” said Declan Collier, CEO of London City Airport. “Following the airport’s planned £350 million expansion project we hope the C Series will become a familiar sight at London City Airport and I look forward to welcoming the maiden SWISS C Series flight later in 2017.” Successful validation flights at LCY Airport a few weeks ago, followed by a landmark non-stop flight from LCY to JFK showed off the CS100’s capabilities. It is going to be interesting to see how the market reacts to the CS100 now that is has the steep approach certification.