Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation (MITAC) has given details on its previously announced programme delay, which will see the first flight slip from the second quarter of 2012 to October-December 2013, and first delivery from first quarter of 2014 to the summer of 2015.
“The flight test timing will be influenced by the weather condition and we are considering weather risks and have built some extra time into the revised schedule,” says the manufacturer.
The company says the flight test delay is to provide time to “Confirm respective fabrication processes,” and “Provide sufficient time for technical studies.”
MITAC says, “First flight details will be announced at a later date or during events such as MRJ roll-out.” The manufacturer add that it, “continues to strive towards accelerating development and delivery the first MRJ to the customer. And also we are considering to ramp up in following mass production.” line.
It adds in a statement: “MITAC notes that the Pratt & Whitney PurePower® engine program is progressing smoothly with first test flight of the MRJ’s PW1217G engine planned from the end of this month.”
The manufacturer said at the time of the Singapore Air Show in February that it would announce a programme delay in the months following the event, adding that the engine testing was not a cause of the delay.
Company officials at the show indicated that the delays were a combination of events, rather than one particular factor.
MITAC estimates that the 70-100 seat regional jet market will exceed more than 5,000 units over the next 20 years. “Airlines have placed high expectations on the MRJ as the sole ‘next-generation’ regional jet able to deliver unbeatable competitiveness through superior fuel efficiency, environmental friendliness, and cabin comfort,” says MITAC. The launch customer for the MRJ is ANA.