Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation has confirmed it is about to place a firm order for 30 Bombardier Q400 NextGen aircraft to launch commercial airlines operations in China under the name of Sutong Airlines.
Sutong Airlines is to be based on the airport of the city of Nantong in Jiangsu province. The Q400 NextGen turboprop will be the sole aircraft type when it starts operations in 2015. The order is valued at about US$ 995 million. The announcement comes a few weeks after news about 22 Q400 being booked at the 2013 Dubai Airshow.
The Bombardier Q400 can accommodate 70 to 86 seats. More than 476 firm orders have been placed for the Q400 and Q400 NextGen. The latter is the most advanced successor to Bombardier’s Dash 8/Q-Series family of aircraft, optimized for short-haul routes.
Worldwide, Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft have transported more than 295 million passengers and have logged over 4.7 million flight hours and more than 5 million take-offs and landings as of 30 September 2013. About 50 customers in over 30 countries operate the aircraft. Bombardier is currently making quite some progress on the Chinese market.