The first Comac C919 airliner has been rolled out at a ceremony in China.
The twin jet regional airliner is the first large scale airliner to be built in China, and was unveiled at the Shanghai factory that it has been developed in. It can carry up to 168 passengers in a single-class layout, with a range of up to 5,555km. It is intended to fulfill the needs of airlines operating trunk routes in China and beyond, and is a competitor for the Airbus A320, Boeing 737 and Embraer E-Jet families of aircraft which dominate.
The rollout of the new aircraft, registered B-001A (c/n 101) at Comac’s facility near Shanghai Pudong, was to great fanfare and attended by politicians and journalists eager to see it.
There will be six flying prototype aircraft involved in certification, along with two grounded examples. First flight is expected in early 2016.
Orders for the C919 so far total over 500 aircraft, making it a large scale success. All of the orders are from Chinese companies, apart from an order of 20 examples from GECAS in the USA. Air China, China Eastern Airlines, Hainan Air and Sichuan Airlines are all expected to take delivery of the type.
Recently Comac announced its new ARJ-21 airliner will enter service in February 2016.