Embraer to consider stretched E-Jets and turboprops

Montreal
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Embraer will consider a stretched version of its second generation E-Jet and a possible turboprop, after the update to its current E-Jet family is in the air.

Paulo Cesar Silva, president and chief executive of Embraer Commercial Aviation, says that both a stretched second generation E-Jet and a turboprop are something for the "future", at the Regional Airline Association (RAA) annual conference in Montreal today. He adds that either would likely occur towards the end of the decade at the earliest.

Embraer plans to formally launch the second generation E-Jet by mid-year with an entry-into-service in 2018. Updates include new wings, fly-by-wire controls and new Pratt & Whitney PW1700G engines for the E-170/175 and PW1900Gs for the E-190/195.

A stretched E-Jet would probably be a "little bit larger" than the E-195, which seats about 106 passengers in a standard two-class configuration, but with fewer than 140 seats to avoid direct competition with the popular Airbus A320neo and Boeing 737 Max 8, says Silva.

"We saw how difficult it would be for us to penetrate in the [140- to 150-seat] market following the success of the two largest manufacturers in the world," he says.

Turboprops are also on the table. Silva says that Embraer is "always looking" at the sector but will likely wait for new technology and engines to become available before it would consider developing an all-new aircraft.

Embraer has no plans to return to the 50-seat aircraft market.

"We are not considering at all going back and looking at a new 50-seater or even smaller aircraft," says Silva. He adds that the airframer is focused on the E-Jet family where it is a market leader.