CSeries costs rise to $3.4 billion

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Development costs and capital investment for the Bombardier CSeries have risen to $3.4 billion from the $3.2 billion previously estimated, company executives have confirmed.

When the CSeries programme was revived about four years ago Bombardier intended for costs to be spread three ways - a contribution split with suppliers, the airframer, and government.

During an earnings conference call this week, Bombardier executives revealed that the overall cost of the programme now totals $3.4 billion, of which Bombardier has committed to provide $2 billion, including $700 million in capex and $1.3 billion for intangibles.

Bombardier Aerospace president and chief operating officer Guy Hachey estimates that "less than half" of the $700 million in capex has been spent to date.

The remaining $1.4 billion in CSeries costs will be roughly split by government, which accounts for $700 million-plus, with "a similar number" coming from suppliers, says Hachey.

Bombardier has secured 90 firm orders and 90 options for the 110/130-seat CSeries. While the company "would have liked to have been able to announce one or two orders" at the recent Farnborough air show, its inability to do so has not changed "what we anticipate to be great interest in the CSeries over the long haul", says the Bombardier executive.

He says Bombardier is in advanced discussions with four or five potential customers and still anticipates signing "a couple of those customers" in the months to come.

The airframer now expects two thirds of CSeries orders will be for the larger variant, the CS300, while one third will be for the CS100, a reversal on its previous expectation that the CS100 would dominate its CSeries order book.