Russia’s Latest Airliner Rolled Out – Irkut MC-21

MS-21

IRKUTSK, RUSSIA – JUNE 8, 2016: Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev (C) speaks at the rollout ceremony for the first Irkut MC-21 jet airliner at an aviation plant of the Irkut Corporation, a United Aircraft Corporation subsidiary. Marina Lystseva/TASS

After heavy delays and silence in recent months, Russia’s Irkut Corporation has finally rolled out its sleek new airliner at its factory in Irkutsk, Siberia.

The MC-21-300 is a modern twin-engine jet airliner capable of carrying up to 180 passengers. It is designed to cater for the gap left by the Tupolev Tu-154 which has been a Russian workhorse for many years but has now been retired by most carriers.

The MC-21 will also come in a -200 variant, which can carry 150 passenger.

Not dissimilar to the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 families, Irkut hopes to enter a popular global market and has already attracted orders for 175 aircraft, with 100 options. Russian national carrier Aeroflot placed an order for 50 examples, in a majour coup for the manufacturer.

MS-21 construction

The MC-21 is available with either Aviadvigatel PD-14 or Pratt & Whitney’s PW1400G engines. Its cabin is wider than the A320, and the construction makes use of composites to keep its weight down.

It is hoped a first flight can be achieved before the end of 2016. The first four aircraft will be delivered to Aeroflot in 2018.

Other carriers to have ordered the MC-21 so far include Red Wings, Nordwind Airlines, UTAir, Cairo Aviation and Azerbaijan Airlines.

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