The new Bombardier CS100, a.k.a. the “C Series,” is nearing its approval for operations at London-City Airport after completing a series of test flights over the last few days.

The Bombardier CS100 touches down at London-City during one of multiple test flights the aircraft performed. (Photo: Bombardier)

The series of testing included eight separate flights, primarily to test the aircrafts’ performance on the airports’ steep approach procedure and short runway.

Rob Dewar, Vice President of the C-Series Aircraft Program, said, “The aircraft smoothly performed all eight takeoffs and landings during a two-day period, as planned.” He added, “The aircraft is meeting all performance expectations and clearly demonstrates that it is the best performing and most efficient aircraft in the 100 to 150 seat class.

Bombardier has said before that the C-Series is meant for noise-sensitive airports around urban developments, which is precisely why London-City Airport was chosen as a primary testing location. The aircraft is a mere 3 miles from the center of London, making it a busy airport for business travelers.

A key business market from LCY is New York, which is why British Airways currently operates a daily Airbus A318 with 32 business class seats from London-City to New York-JFK with a stop in Shannon, Ireland for USA border preclearance. British Airways has previously shown interest in the CS100 aircraft for this mission exclusively, as the aircraft has necessary range and size for this flight.

The interior of the all-business class Airbus A318 British Airways currently operates on its LCY-JFK via SNN runs. (Photo: British Airways)

The CS100 boasts some very impressive performance stats, among them a 3,100 nm range, 4,800 ft. takeoff run at maximum takeoff weight (MTOW), and running on 2x Pratt & Whitney PW1500G turbofans, using 19,000 lbs. of thrust per engine. The aircraft is said to operate in an incredibly efficient manner, as well, with a marketed 18% lower cost per passenger, and the aircraft operates up to 20% better than the average aircraft at “hot and high” airports such as Denver, Mexico City, or Addis Ababa.

The flight Bombardier operated on Monday from LCY to JFK was loaded with a weight equivalent to 40 business class seats, 8 more than the current Airbus A318 offers on it’s transatlantic runs. The airplane is not fitted with economy seats due to the exclusivity of the flight, which is taken almost only by business travelers in the London area with business ties in New York. The reason for this: flights are well over $4000 each way. The current flights operate under the following schedule:

BA1 London City 9:40 a.m. departure -> Shannon 11:00 a.m. arrival

BA1 Shannon 11:50 a.m. departure -> New York – JFK 2:05 p.m. arrival  A318

BA2 New York – JFK 6:25 p.m. departure -> London City 6:50 a.m. arrival

The successful flight of the CS100 from London to New York is a promising sight for business travelers and airlines alike, giving the businesses’ an efficient option to travel between two of the world’s largest economic hubs. These test flights should be the first of a series of incredible accomplishments the CSeries is slated to perform during it’s lifespan. Bravo, Bombardier!




Categories: Industry Talk