By Murdo Morrison and Montreal

Bombardier’s proposed 98-100-seat version of its CRJ900 regional jet will be almost 3m longer, with larger wing and cabin windows and three extra rows of seats.

The Canadian manufacturer has revealed the details of the study into the so-called CRJ900X, which could be given board approval alongside – or as an alternative to – the CSeries mainline narrowbody later this year (Flight International, 20-26 June).


The CRJ900X will have two additional centre barrel sections – the forward one being 1.58m (62in)-long, the aft 1.37m – giving three extra rows of seats at the standard 31in (79cm) pitch. The fuselage-cross section will remain the same.

The wing trailing edge will be increased in area by 7.5%, while the General Electric CF34-8 engines will offer between 2% and 5% more thrust.

There will be larger passenger windows and a new dual zone environmental control system. The Canadian manufacturer will also strengthen the landing gear and may adopt carbon brakes to save weight.

Barry MacKinnon, vice-president of markets and airline analysis at Bombardier Regional Aircraft, says the changes could deliver an 8-10% improvement in seat-km costs over the 86-seat CRJ900.

MacKinnon says the project is now in a “customer consultation period” and he is “hoping” the Bombardier board will take a decision this year to take the “study” to the next stage.

MacKinnon says Bombardier, which is also studying an 86 to 90-seat stretch version of its Dash 8 Q400 turboprop, remains “very confident” about the prospects of the larger regional aircraft market.

He says 40% of operators of smaller regional jets will need to renew their aircraft over the next few years.

Source: Flight International