Cancellations impact 2006 net sales as demand plummets for 50-seat models

Output by the Western regional aircraft manufacturers fell by a quarter during the first six months of 2006 compared with the same period last year, and net orders for jets have collapsed due to a large number of cancellations.

ATR, Bombardier and Embraer delivered 111 regional aircraft during the first half of this year (Bombardier data is for the first half of its financial year which runs from 31 January to 31 July). This compares to 148 deliveries during the first six months of last year.

The output fall has been driven by the sudden drop off in demand for 50-seat jets - which has also been dramatically felt in the order books - although a 50% increase in turboprop deliveries to 29 aircraft has slightly offset this.

The turboprop is the clear winner in the order stakes this year, with 62 net orders - the majority of which was for ATR. Although an impressive tally, this figure is actually down on the same period last year when 93 orders were placed for turboprops.

Although some of the larger regional jet models had a good six months, the overall net order total for the jets was minus two due to significant cancellations for the Bombardier CRJ100/200, CRJ701 and Embraer ERJ-145 family and E-170.

As a result of the jet order book being in the red, total regional net orders were down significantly from last year's 167 to just 60.

The regional backlog has declined by almost 10% to 579 aircraft, although the turboprop component has increased over 50% to 208 units. The improving market for propeller-driven aircraft has pushed the turboprop's share of the backlog to 35% - the highest since the last decade.

Turboprops first half

Western regional jets first half 2006

Source: Flight International