Embraer E2 Jets Get ETOPS 120 Approval Will It Help Sales?

ETOPS approval is something particularly important for jets. It allows them to cover routes where they would find themselves at quite a distance from an alternate airport. This the case with over water routes or routes overflying remote or desert areas. Therefore having an extended ETOPS approval makes a jet all the more appealing to airlines. In recent news the latest planes to get ETOPS 120 approval are the Embraer E190-E2 and E195-E2. Will this help the manufacturer close more deals?

Just A Little More Flexibility to E2 Jet Operators

This is great news for the, not too many, E2 Embraer operators. They will now be able and allowed to plan routes over isolated areas that previously were out of the E2’s reach. Although it’ll allow more flexibility in route mapping, it won’t drastically change the aircraft’s usage in my opinion. Some of the most attractive routes would still remain out of range.

The Embraer E2 family of jets has in fact a range of up to 2,800nm (or 5280km). That is a little more than the distance that separates London Heathrow and Reykjavik. One of the possible routes the airline could possibly be used on. It is also a similar distance to the one between LAX and Honolulu, however the aircraft would need an ETOPS 180 rating to operate that specific route. Therefore LAX-HNL would still remain out of reach for the little jet.

Breeze Airways Embraer E175 on Takeoff. Aircraft that in its E2 version is incompatible with operations of US regional airlines.

Will It Help Win More Deals For Embraer?

Probably not, mainly for 2 reasons:

  • The new ETOPS rating is for the largest variants of the E2 family jets, the E190 and E195. The E170 and E175 are the jets US carriers use on regional flights.
  • The issue with the Scope Clause on the E175-E2 jet still stands and the issue hasn’t been solved in any way. If US carriers were to purchase this plane they would have to integrate it into their main fleets. That clearly defies the purpose of having this jet that is designed to operate in regional airlines with a lower operational cost model.

So it is very unlikely that the manufacturer will see an uptick in sales of these new generation planes in the US, which at the moment is still the largest market in the world for regional jets.

This is also why we have continuously have been seeing orders come in for older generation Embraer regional jets from US carriers.

Although the family of Embraer regional jets remains hugely successful, the miscalculations made at a design stage will continue to hinder the E2 generation. That is unless a major redesign is undertaken to make the planes compatible with US regional airlines.

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