Mexican carrier Interjet performed the first revenue flights with its Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ 100) aircraft on September 18th 2013. “Thus we have entered the Western market, - Nazario Cauceglia, Chief Executive Officer of SuperJet International said. – Having passed a start-up phase, the SSJ100 is becoming a competitive player at the regional aircraft market”. The solemn handover ceremony for the first SSJ100 delivered to Interjet was held at Le Bourget 2013 airshow. At that time we had a chance to take a closer look at this “export version” of the jet.
The solemn delivery ceremony for the first Interjet’s Sukhoi Superjet 100 was held at Paris Air Show on June 18th 2013. The representatives of SuperJet International (SJI) – joint venture between Alenia Aermacchi (Finmeccanica company), Sukhoi Holding Company (part of UAC), United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia and Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company (SCAC) took part in the ceremony.
“We are delighted to announce this important milestone at the Paris Air Show, – Nazario Cauceglia, CEO of SuperJet International, said. – Over the last few months we have been working closely with our customer - the Mexico’s second largest carrier”. CEO of Interjet, Luis Garza, in his own turn said: “We are delighted to take delivery of our first SSJ100 and be a part of Europe’s largest airshow”. He also noted that the jet will start performing revenue flights soon. “We place our confidence in our choice because SSJ100 aircraft is perfect for Interjet’s domestic short- and medium-haul routes. It will also help us keep the highest quality of our services offering a great comfort, low operating costs and flexibility”, - Luis Garza said.
According to participants of the ceremony, the aircraft was presented at Le Bourget with its exclusive interior designed by Pininfarina featuring a 93-seats layout (with a seat pitch of 34’). The interior was developed in accordance with Interjet’s high standards in the area of passenger comfort. The jet was painted, completed and customized at the SuperJet International’s facilities in Venice (Italy).
The interior is really solid and very comfortable as compared to the first serial Superjets. However, it is not quite clear what did the members of Russian delegation mean by saying “exclusive”. In my opinion it is just a high-quality advanced cabin, which is as good as the cabin of serial Boeing and Airbus aircraft. Anyway, thanks to Pininfarina and the Italina partners this is the best interior of a Russian-produced jet I have ever seen.
I think that the most important news is that the aftersales support of Interjet’s SSJ 100 fleet will be carried out by SuperJet International in the network of SuperCare “per-flight-hour” program - a special tailored aftersales solution aimed at reducing operating costs. The required parts will be delivered to America from the Fort Lauderdale stock. Finally we see some significant steps towards establishing the aftersales support system.
According to the company, the program is being financed with the support of export agencies from Italy, France and Russia. It is said in the press-release of SCAC: “SACE, COFACE and VEB/EXIAR granted a far-seeing approach to this important deal, which cleared the way to the Western market for SSJ100”.
And this was not the only event related to Sukhoi Superjet 100 held at Paris Air Show 2013. SCAC and Ilyushin Finance & Co. (IFC) signed a Heads of Agreement for delivery of 20 Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft on June 17th 2013. According to the agreement, 15 SSJ SSJ100/95B aircraft will be delivered to IFC. The lessor will lease the jets to customers from South-East Asia and Middle East. Another 5 RRJ-95LR jets (extended range version) will be purchased by IFC for future deals. The deliveries should be started in 2015. It is planned to finance the deliveries via the governmental program for financial support (guarantees) of export of hi-tech industrial products. These guarantees are provided by the government to banks, which grant credits to buyers of Russian products. This agreement was converted into firm order at MAKS-2013 airshow.
On June 19th 2013 SCAC and AeroLease (Bahrain leasing company) signed a letter of intent on financing and/or leasing of existing and future contracts for delivery of SSJ 100 aircraft.
Generally there was a lot of excitement for Superjet at Paris Air Show. At least Russian delegation did it best to draw the attention of the guests to the aircraft. And the presence of Russia in Le Bourget showed through, first of all thanks to participation of Su-35 fighter and Ka-52 helicopter in demonstration flights. Unfortunately, Superjet has not performed any flights at the show. So we had to content ourselves with the view of the parked aircraft.
http://www.ruaviation.com/docs/3/2013/9/27/74/ Roman Gusarov