Bombardier mulls boost to Q400 production

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Bombardier is evaluating boosting production of its Q400 turboprop.

The programme has suffered supply chain challenges since Bombardier began moving fuselage work from Japan to China and Belfast. But production of Bombardier Q200s and Q300s is expected to cease mid-year when final orders are filled, and management hopes this will free up resources for its Q400 programme.

"We are studying whether we can ramp-up the Q400 production rate at our Toronto facility," says a Bombardier spokesman.

As of 31 October Bombardier had received total orders for 322 Q400s. Its backlog stood at 113 of the type.

With respect to regional jet production, the CRJ700/900 is currently on a three-day manufacturing rate at Bombardier's Mirabel facility.

Bombardier's fiscal year ends 31 January. "Regarding fiscal year 2009/10 production, we will provide guidance at our next quarterly conference results," says the Bombardier spokesman.

The airframer has warned of some order cancellations going forward due to difficulties in the marketplace. However, it has not yet mentioned if this will impact the production rate.