Bombardier Aerospace announced (07-Mar-2013) the development of the CSeries aircraft is making "excellent progress" as the programme readies to transition to the flight test phase in order to achieve first flight by the end of Jun-2013. Bombardier Commercial Aircraft president Mike Arcamone said: "The CSeries aircraft programme is making solid progress, having met a number of key milestones over the last few months." The company's main focus is "the development, optimisation and marketing of the CSeries family of aircraft in the 100- to 149-seat market segment" according to Mr Arcamone. As of 31-Dec-2012, Bombardier had booked orders and commitments for 382 CSeries aircraft, including firm orders for 148.
- Extra capacity seating: Bombardier also confirmed it has introduced an extra capacity seating option that will increase the CS300 aircraft seating to up to 160 passengers, providing customers with additional payload and range flexibility, as well as increased productivity. It also confirmed that Latvia-based airBaltic is one of these customers, having selected a 148-seat higher-density version. The CS300 aircraft’s systems’ capacity has been increased to accommodate a higher passenger count. The extra capacity seating option, which requires the addition of a second pair of over-wing exit doors, will be available both in-production and as a retrofit should customers need that flexibility in the future. [more - original PR]