The latest and largest member of the Embraer regional jet family soars into the skies over Paris on the back of a major order from British low cost carrier Flybe, whose livery the aircraft wears. Shortly before the show the airline placed orders and options for 26 of the EMB-195 118-seat aircraft, rejecting larger Airbus and Boeing alternatives. Flybe ordered 14 aircraft with options on a further 12 in a deal worth up to $870 million.


For Embraer it's an important deal, as it's the first firm customer for the new type. Swiss International Air Lines could will switch its order for EMB-195s to EMB-190s. Flybe has bought the EMB-195s as replacement aircraft for its fleet of BAe 146-200/300s and leased Boeing 737-300s. Deliveries are scheduled between August 2006 and November 2007.

According to Flybe managing director Jim French the new aircraft will be used to develop international routes from the airline's UK bases. "Our international services have been constrained by the physical limits of our current fleet."

Airbus and Boeing alternatives were rejected as being too big for the job, he added. "We looked at the classic 150 to 180-seat aircraft from Boeing and Airbus but decided that these were simply too big, in our belief, for our markets. We needed to meet the needs of the regional market."

The EMB-195s will give Flybe a single type jet fleet to complement its single-type turbo-prop fleet of Bombardier Q400s.

Source: Flight Daily News