Mexico's Interjet is in talks with Sukhoi to sell its Superjet 100 fleet, following a series of maintenance issues over the aircraft's five years of service at the airline.
"We're finalising an amicable negotiation with Sukhoi," Interjet chief executive Jose Luis Garza tells FlightGlobal, confirming reports in Mexican media that the airline plans to sell the aircraft.
Garza indicates that an outcome could be reached within days. Sukhoi did not respond to queries for comment.
Interjet is the only SSJ100 operator in the Americas, and began revenue service with the type in September 2013. The carrier has 21 SSJ100s in service, with one aircraft in storage and another eight on order, Flight Fleets Analyzer shows. Interjet also operates 63 Airbus A320 family aircraft.
Its plan to sell the SSJ100 fleet comes after several episodes in which the airline was forced to ground part of the fleet over mechanical issues.
In the second quarter, the airline received compensation of almost $40 million for maintenance costs related to its SSJ100 fleet. Bloomberg reported in January that the carrier had grounded four SSJ100s for months and was cannibalising the aircraft for parts to keep the other SSJ100s operational.
In early 2017, the airline was forced to take 11 SSJ100s out of service for repairs, after defects were found on stabiliser nodes.
Interjet had previously downplayed the issues on the aircraft, pointing to how it had negotiated a "sweet deal" for the SSJ100 order, with the capital cost of 10 aircraft about equal with the pre-delivery payment for one A320.
Source: Cirium Dashboard