Do small jets have a long shelf life, and can passengers expect to be flying Embraer E-Jets, large Bombardier CRJs and the CSeries well into the future? One way to answer that question is to look at whether or not small jets remain attractive to operating lessors.
I’m on the ground here in San Diego at the annual Americas conference of the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT) . Attendees in the audience represent a ‘who’s who’ of aircraft lessors and financiers, plus top executives from all commercial airframers and major news agencies.
The following question was posed to the audience for a vote:
“Are small jets attractive for operating lessors?”
An overwhelming majoring – 59% – said ‘yes’. Of these, 44% believe “this is an attractive market for lessors that are looking to diversity away from the crowded A320/737 space”, while 15% believe “the Embraer 190/195RE and CSeries will develop a broad application for lessors”.
See slide below. Meanwhile, Bombardier VP sales and asset management Rod Sheridan updated the audience about the CSeries program. He says the Canadian airframer is confident it will secure 300 customers by entry into service; it holds 201 firm orders today. Bombardier hopes “to get a few more rolling” in the lead up to the Farnborough Air Show.