Bombardier's announcement that an "air carrier in the Americas" has signed a letter of intent for 12 CSeries includes an update on the first flight-test vehicle (FTV), which until recently was still publicly scheduled to fly right around now.
The composite wings for FTV1 are being mated to the fuselage at the Mirabel final-assembly facility, and the aircraft is on track for its rescheduled first flight at the end of June 2013, Bombardier says. Assembly of the complete-aircraft structural test article, or CAST, is complete and the instrumentation and loading system are being finalized.
Structural tests are to begin in January and will pace the first flight as initial flight-loads testing needs to be completed before the aircraft can be cleared fly. But it sounds as though Bombardier is now on a more achievable schedule.