SINGAPORE: Mitsubishi unveils joined fuselage of first flight test jet

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Mitsubishi Aircraft has unveiled pictures of the MRJ regional jet's first joined fuselage, in an effort to show that the programme is taking shape and on track for its a first flight in Q2 of 2015.

The pictures show aircraft 10001, fused from the forward fuselage through to aft fuselage, and bearing the airframer's red, black and gold livery. The wings, tail and nose of the aircraft have yet to be joined. The fuselage of aircraft 90001, which will be used for ground tests, is also under final assembly.

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Mitsubishi Aircraft

“We are here to show our progress in the production of our test aircraft. This is very important to our airline customers and so we will do that,” says its head of sales Yugo Fukuhara at a press briefing at the Singapore air show.

He adds that the aircraft’s tail will be delivered in “the next few months”, while the wings are scheduled to be delivered in April. Mitsubishi’s vice president of corporate planning & business strategy Hitoshi Iwasa adds that the plan is for the aircraft’s wings to be joined to its body, before the arrival of its first Pratt & Whitney PW1200G geared turbofan engines in late April.

Iwasa adds that he is confident the 88-seat MRJ90 will keep to its schedule and take first flight in Q2 2015. Last August, Mitsubishi announced a third delay to its programme schedule.

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