Bombardier believes there is still room in Delta Air Lines' fleet for the 110/130-seat CSeries aircraft, despite Delta president Ed Bastian's recent statement that the carrier is not in the market for any more new aircraft.
Last month Delta ordered 100 Boeing 737-900ERs. Weeks later Bastian said: "There is no second step of aircraft, whether it be with Bombardier, or Embraer, or Boeing or Airbus. I do want to put to rest any thought that we are in the market, considering a new aircraft decision."
Speaking to ATI at the ERA General Assembly in Rome, Bombardier senior vice-president sales, marketing and asset management Chet Fuller said he thinks Delta "made a good, prudent, justified decision" in ordering the 737-900ER, as the carrier's most immediate need was to replace its Boeing 757s.
He also asserted that the economic situation in the United States is so challenging at present that "it really becomes difficult in that environment to make aggressive decisions".
Fuller noted, however, that Bombardier had "a tremendous engagement" with Delta, and that he "absolutely" sees room for the carrier to add the CSeries to its fleet down the road. "It's a great airplane and fits perfectly in their system," added Fuller.
In addition to older 757s, Delta operates a large fleet of aged McDonnell Douglas MD-88s, which will ultimately need to be replaced.