Canadian manufacturer Bombardier has received a major boost for its Dash 8-Q400 turboprop after securing a significant commitment from India’s SpiceJet. The letter of intent, signed at the Paris Air Show, covers up to 50 examples including 25 firm and 25 purchase orders and is valued at up to $1.7bn if all options are exercised.
Announcing the deal at the Paris Air Show, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft President Fred Cromer said: “We are proud to sign this agreement as it is another demonstration of the Q400’s superiority in the turboprop market. When finalised, the repeat order will increase the Q400 aircraft fleet in the fast-growing market in the Asia-Pacific region and will launch the high-density 86-passenger model of the Q400 aircraft in India.” He continued: “This is also compelling evidence that the demand for turboprop aircraft is healthy in short-to medium-haul markets that can’t economically support jets that are more expensive to operate.”
Ajay Singh, Chairman and Managing Director of SpiceJet added: “I am delighted that we will be acquiring 50 Q400 planes. SpiceJet operates India’s largest regional fleet and is the only organised operator in this space. The acquisition will help us further increase connectivity to smaller towns and cities and help realise Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of ensuring that every Indian can fly. Our passengers will be able to fly to more cities and help expand India’s already booming aviation market.”
Deliveries of the first examples, which will be configured in a high-density 86-seat layout, is expected early next year.
The SpiceJet deal came just hours after Philippine Airlines increased its outstanding Q400 order to 12 aircraft by firming up its seven purchase options. Meanwhile, the Canadian manufacturer confirmed Ethiopian Airlines as the undisclosed customer behind last week’s five-aircraft order.