Production of the Mitsubishi Regional Jet is under way with the first metal cut for the aircraft's horizontal stabiliser.

The manufacturing work kicked off at a ceremony at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries' Nagoya Aerospace Systems Works.

Mitsubishi Aircraft says: "Project partners will now launch manufacturing of the various components they are responsible for, based on the production drawings", which are "progressing after detailed design review this summer".

Mitsubishi completed the design review of the MRJ last month. The 90-seater aircraft's first flight is scheduled for the second quarter of 2012, with first delivery to launch customer All Nippon Airways in the first quarter of 2014.

MRJ horizontal stabilzer
© Mitsubishi Aircraft

MHI is manufacturing the MRJ's major components, including the fuselage, wing, empennage and core system. It is also responsible for the final assembly and equipment installation of the aircraft.

"Going forward, MHI and MJET continue to devote their utmost efforts to make the MRJ project a success, aiming to play a significant role in the ongoing development of the global aviation industry," says Mitsubishi.

ANA has placed a firm order for 15 aircraft with 10 options. Apart from the Japanese airline, American regional carrier Trans States Holdings has signed a letter of intent for 50 firm orders and 50 options.

Source: Flight International