A new aircraft took to the air yesterday in Brazil, with the Embraer E175-E2 making its maiden flight.
It’s the third member of the E2 series family (The E190-E2 and E195-E2 are already certified for operation).
The first E175-E2 conducted its first flight from the company’s facility in São José dos Campos. The first flight was a 2 hour and 18-minute sortie. According to Embraer, The aircraft took off and landed with fly-by-wire (FBW) controls in normal mode. The crew evaluated aircraft performance, flight quality and systems behaviour during the flight.
Three E175-E2’s will be used in the certification campaign for the type, with the first two prototypes to be used for aerodynamic, performance and system tests. The third prototype will be used to validate maintenance tasks and will be outfitted with interior furnishings.
In terms of interiors, the E175-E2 will be able to seat one more row of passenger in it compared to the existing E175 aircraft. Predictions currently place 80 seats in a two-class configuration and up to 90 seats in a single class.
Meanwhile, the type will be powered by Pratt & Whitney GTF PW1700G ultra-high bypass ratio engines. This is combined with a completely new wing, full fly-by-wire controls and new landing gear.
John Slattery, President & CEO, Embraer Commercial Aviation said
“Today’s flight of the E175-E2 marks the completion of our vision to produce a family of new-generation commercial aircraft that bring unparalleled cost savings to our customers, exceptional comfort for their passengers, and fewer emissions for the planet,”
“The E190-E2 and the E195-E2 are already stellar performers. The E175-E2 is just as impressive. We’re eager to get working on certification. My sincere thanks to every Embraer employee who helped make this day possible.”
Filling in the smaller gaps.
With a maximum capacity of 90 seats, the E175-E2 will be fighting for orders from ATR, De Havlilland of Canada and of course, the Mitsubishi SpaceJet/CRJ families.
For Embraer, its going to be an interesting challenge to sell this. Whilst there will be a lot of airlines looking for a like-for-like replacement of E170/E175 frames, there may be some issues with the US market as they deal with the regional airlines scope clauses.
However they approach this could be the key to selling the aircraft (with Bombardier showing one way around with the CRJ550 – downsized in passenger seats in the aircraft and offering a better on-board experience).
It’s interesting times with a resurgent De Havilland and ATR willing to take challenge in the air.
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