is expected to announce an order for its aircraft from Latvian airline Air Baltic, and may unveil the deal at the Farnborough air show today.
According to industry sources, the aircraft are believed to be replacements for the carrier’s aging fleet ofClassics, and could number about 15 aircraft. Neither Bombardier nor Air Baltic was prepared to comment.
If confirmed, the commitment would be a major blow for, which competed for the order with its and, as an option for later deliveries, the A319NEO.
Air Baltic also had been looking at’s 737-700 and 737-7 MAX.
Airbus Chief Operating Officer-Customers John Leahy has been talking down the sales prospects of the CSeries for some time, and at the Farnborough air show July 9 he reiterated that the A319NEO will be an aircraft for “all those people that don’t want to buy the CSeries.”
With Air Baltic trying to replace its narrowbodies as quickly as possible, timing and availability also were important factors. The A319NEO will not be available before 2016, and the CSeries is scheduled to enter service by the end of 2013.
The Canadian manufacturer also has announced an order for 15 aircraft from an undisclosed customer. Orders and commitments now stand at 153 for the CS100 and CS300 combined.