Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company (UMMC) headed by Iskandar Makhmudov plans to develop a new regional jet by 2015, BFM reports with reference to Vedomosti.
According to the General Director of UMMC-Holding, Andrey Kozitsyn, the aircraft will be manufactured by a Kunowice-based (Czech Republic) plant (51% of the enterprise was purchased by UMMC in 2008). All the tests will be completed next year and the aircraft’s price will be set.
«The plant was manufacturing L-410 aircraft using old airframes back in 2008. And now in 2012 we are manufacturing 16 aircraft per year», — Kozitsyn said. According to him, during the UMMC’s presence the enterprise’s staff increased from 300 to 1000 employees. He also explained that the company sees no point in increasing the output of this aircraft and a new vehicle will be developed by 2015. «It will still have the airframe of L-410, but the other components will be different», — Kozitsyn explained.
It is not clear if the aircraft would still be equipped by Czech-produced engines. They may be replaced by Pratt & Whitney’s ones. A source familiar with the company’s plans said that the aircraft’s designation is L-610. L-410 UPV E-20 with GE80-200 engines will become an interim stage of the project. Russian leasing company “Ilyushin Finance & Co” (IFC) ordered 10 such aircraft at Farnborough air show. The aircraft’s price is $5.5 million while its closest rivals cost about $7-8 million. A representative of IFC said that these aircraft will be performing flights to small regional airports. He also said that the aircraft’s range is 600 km (with maximum payload). For example, the vehicle is able to perform non-stop flights from Kazan to Orenburg.
Prime-minister of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev instructed Ministry of Industry and Trade and United Aircraft Corporation in August to consider the possibility of developing Russian-produced regional aircraft. This decision was supported by the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin. «We must develop our own aircraft», — he said.