Bombardier poised to announce more CSeries orders: analyst

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Bombardier is poised to announce fresh orders for its 110/130-seat Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW1500G CSeries twinjet at the forthcoming Farnborough air show, analyst Nick Heymann predicts.

Heymann, who heads up global industrial infrastructure at privately-held brokerage Sterne, Agee, in a recent interview with consultancy IAG said: "We think at Farnborough we will see at least one or two major new [CSeries] orders, possibly three. We think over the next year to two years, we could see upwards of a dozen major airlines step up and embrace this aircraft."

He adds: "It's one of those kind of competitive dynamics where if [a] competitor does move you really have very little alternative to not move, because a 6%-7% differential in operating cost performance is very hard to overcome and still remain competitive in the ultra-competitive commercial airline market."

To date, Bombardier has secured 90 firm orders and 90 options for the CSeries, including a 40-strong firm order from US operator Republic Airways Holdings.

Heymann believes the CSeries is being seriously evaluated by several US carriers and that Qatar Airways is likely to place an order "to feed their global trunk airline route structure".

Airbus and Boeing, meanwhile, are in them midst of deciding how to counter the CSeries threat.

Airbus tested P&W's geared turbofan demonstrator engine in late 2008 through early 2009 on its A340 flight-test aircraft, and is now formally evaluating the powerplant together with CFM International's Leap X high-bypass turbofan under a proposed new engine option (NEO) for the A320.

Boeing, meanwhile, expects to make a final decision this year on re-engining the 737 or opting for a clean-sheet replacement of its narrowbody family. The company has acknowledged that its planned production increase for the 737 family is driven, in part, by new programmes such as the CSeries.