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Mitsubishi Aircraft has attracted its first European customer, with Swedish lessor Rockton signing a letter of intent that covers a firm order for 10 MRJ90s plus options on an additional 10.

A definite agreement will be inked "in a couple of months", says Mitsubishi, and the aircraft are scheduled for delivery to Rockton from 2020.

The lessor currently has a portfolio of 28 aircraft comprising Saab 2000s, Saab 340s and Bombardier Q400s. These are operating in Europe and North America.

Rockton president Niklas Lund says the lessor has been eyeing regional jets for a few years now and decided on the MRJ because of its clean-sheet design, Pratt & Whitney PW1200G engines and aircraft economics.

"This European lessor order from Rockton will give the MRJ programme the burst of momentum to expand the customer base in Europe," says Mitsubishi president Hiromichi Morimoto.

Mitsubishi currently has firm orders for 223 aircraft from six customers. Rockton is the second lessor to sign for the Japanese aircraft, with US lessor Aerolease Aviation having also signed an LOI for 10 MRJ90s.

Source: Cirium Dashboard