ZURICH, Switzerland—The inaugural passenger flight of a CSeries jet went off without incident late last week, with the first Swiss International Air Lines CS100 taking off from Zurich en route to Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris.
The long-awaited flight, which came more than two and a half years behind schedule, as well as about $2 billion over initial cost estimates, marks what Bombardier Inc. hopes will be the end of a turbulent ride for its controversial commercial jet program.
“We salute SWISS on the CS100 aircraft’s successful entry-into-service and thank the airline for its outstanding support to the C Series aircraft program,” Fred Cromer, president, of the company’s Commercial Aircraft division, said. “We also congratulate all the employees and suppliers who have worked tirelessly to bring us to this great milestone.”
The Montreal-based company said it hopes to maintain its recent momentum as it continues to search for new buyers for both the CS100 and CS300
Last week Transport Canada certified Bombardier’s larger CSeries jet; the company expects to deliver the first CS300 in the fourth quarter of this year.
Following several big-ticket orders announced earlier this year from Delta Air Lines and Air Canada, Bombardier now has 370 firm order for its CSeries jets. The company said it connected with a number of senior aviation industry executives at the Farnborough Airshow in the U.K. last week, but it failed to post any new orders.