Mitsubishi Aircraft (Mitac) expects to detail plans for significant changes to the smaller of its two regional jets under development during this Paris Air Show as part of an effort to better satisfy scope clause-restrained airlines in the U.S.
Speaking last month after a ceremony marking the opening of Mitac’s U.S. headquarters in Renton, Washington, Mitac chief development officer Alex Bellamy explained that the airplane formerly known as the MRJ70—a designation the company retired in favor of the newly named SpaceJet M100—will need to carry 76 seats in a three-class configuration while retaining the MRJ70’s ability to meet the 86,000-pound maximum takeoff weight limitations in the scope clauses written into the pilot union labor contracts at the three U.S.
major airlines. Bellamy, whose role with Mitac recently shifted from MRJ program head to chief development officer, would offer no further details of the plan other than to say the airplane would retain commonality with the former MRJ90, now known as the SpaceJet M90. The company expects certification and entry into service of that model by the middle of next year and the official launch of the SpaceJet M100 by year-end.