Macquarie AirFinance has placed an order for 40 CSeries aircraft, with options for an additional 10, providing a boost to the program. All of the orders are for the larger CS300 model, with deliveries scheduled between 2017 and 2019. This increases firm orders for the CSeries to 243, with 563 total commitments including options and purchase rights, and the company is approach its goal of 300 firm orders upon entry into service.
The selection of the CSeries by a leasing company is significant, as it indicates that the aircraft finance community also perceives a strong market for the aircraft. Macquarie is the third leasing company selecting the aircraft, joining LCI and Ilyushin Finance. Macquarie AirFinance currently manages 136 jet aircraft leased to 73 operators in 43 countries across six continents.
Stephen Cook, Chairman of Macquarie AirFinance, said “We welcome the addition of Bombardier’s CS300 to Macquarie AirFinance’s portfolio. This agreement is consistent with Macquarie AirFinance’s approach of seeking carefully considered transactions to expand the reach of our successful aircraft leasing business. The CS300 will allow us to offer our customers the only type of aircraft optimized for the upper end of the 100 to 150 seat market segment. Its advanced technologies, attractive economics, and environmental attributes were key factors in our selection of the CS300 jetliner.”
“With its outstanding performance, transcontinental range, operating cost advantage, widebody comfort and cabin flexibility, the CS300 aircraft is tailor-made to meet the fleet replacement requirements of airlines and other operators around the world,” said Ray Jones, Senior Vice President, Sales and Asset Management, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.
This is the second piece of good news for CSeries this week, as their flight tests are now operating with the fly by wire system in the normal mode, having completed software modifications while the aircraft was grounded with engine difficulties. The transition to normal mode has eliminated a concern of many analysts who were concerned that the aircraft was operating in bypass mode during initial flight testing, and that the fly-by-wire system was a potential source for a further delay. Those concerns have been alleviated, and the program should now move forward through its flight test program as planned.