Bombarding the Aircraft Industry

Hello, aircraft fans!

In this edition of the Plane View, we’ll take a look at the most popular short-range aircraft company in North America: Bombardier.  Operating mainly from Canada, this company has made one of the most used short range jets (the CRJ700) and one of the best turboprop airliners available (being the Dash-8).  It also has created a fine firefighter aircraft.

bombardier-de havilland-dash-8-horizon-turboprop

The Dash-8 has worked beautifully for Horizon, Air Canada, and Alaska.

Back in 1965, Bombardier, along with De Havilland Canada, formed a plan to create a turboprop airliner.  They did so, and the result was the Dash-7.  It was indeed a major progressive step towards the Dash-8.

Meanwhile, Bombardier teamed up with Canadair design the CL-215/CL-415.  Firefighting has always been its main role, and has been used by a number of operators in North America and Europe.  It has been used since 1967, which was important as the Grumman G-21 Goose and Consolidated PBY Catalina had both become obsolete.

Again with Canadair, Bombardier created the CL-600 Challenger.  It turned out to be a whole series of aircraft, but it had such a small load of only 19 passengers that it was not much more successful than the aircraft that it countered: the LearStar 600.  Since 1978, it has not had as many sales, but is indeed a superior aircraft.

By 1983, the 1965 Dash-7 was rather obsolete, so Bombardier again teamed with De Havilland Canada to create the Dash-8.  It has been extremely successful, and would have been even more so if the regional jet had been preferred over the regional turboprop.  Over 600 have been sold, and the main users are Alaska, Horizon, and Air Canada.

bombardier-de havilland-dash-8-landing

A Horizon Dash-8 flying in for a landing.

In 1991, Bombardier and Canadair joined to make their most famous aircraft: the CRJ.  The entire series has “bombarded” (get it?) the regional jet market.  Airlines such as Alaska and Horizon have found it just perfect for regional flights, and the Boeings have put away for the long flights.  But a few Boeings still remain in the regional service.

And now, one of Bombardier’s greatest feats: the BD-700 Global Express.  Yes, the name is very fitting, as this aircraft can fly at 678 M.P.H. for 7,485 miles with 8 passengers at up to 51,000 feet.  It can still fly with up to 19 passengers, but with a shorter range.  It was designed to create a new meaning to speed, range, and comfort while on aircraft flights.  It is capable of the New York to Tokyo run.  And over 70 have been sold already.

bombardier-de havilland-dash-8-air canada-horizon-alaska

Another variant of the Dash-8.

The aircraft mentioned are Bombardier’s most successful airplanes.  I’m also glad to hear that the Boeing 787 Dreamliners were grounded.

Have a great day!

Isaiah