Palma Holding places firm Q400 NextGen order

Washington DC
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Aircraft lessor Palma Holding Limited has signed a firm agreement to purchase four Q400 NextGen turboprops from Bombardier.

The agreement, which Bombardier says could be worth approximately $282 million, also gives Dubai-based Palma the option to acquire an additional four aircraft of the type.

Palma signed a letter of intent to acquire the aircraft in November 2013 and intends to lease the four initial turboprops to Ethiopian Airlines under a joint venture with Ibdar Bank, says Bombardier. Ethiopian already operates 13 Q400 NextGen aircraft.

Palma’s aircraft will be outfitted with two classes and will be the first Q400 NextGens owned by a lessor in the Middle East, says Bombardier.

With the new order, Bombardier has accumulated firm orders for 484 Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft, says the manufacturer.

It adds that the Q400 NextGen has advanced avionics and the ability to operate from unpaved runways in “hot and high” conditions.