Bombardier Is Having Big Troubles With Its New CSeries Plane

Bombardier CS100REUTERS/Christinne MuschiBombardier employees stand around the CSeries aircraft prior to its first test flight in Mirabel, Quebec.

Bombardier announced this week that its delayed CSeries airliner will resume test flights after a summer-long layoff.

The Canadian-built Boeing and Airbus challenger had been grounded since a May 29th incident that saw one of the jet’s Pratt & Whitney engines suffer a massive failure during a test.

Since then, Goldman Sachs cut its target price for Bombardier and advised investors to sell the company’s stock. Even worse, the C Series’ launch partner, Braathens Aviation, announced its intention to remove itself from that role. The Swedish charter airline cited the CSeries’ continuing delays as the main reason for its decision.

The CSeries’ competitors are the Boeing 737-700 and Airbus A319. Both are veteran aircraft with more than 1,000 orders on the books and more than 1,000 aircraft already delivered. The CSeries has so far racked up only 203 orders — and no aircraft delivered.

Goldman Sachs analysts Noah Poponak believes it will be very difficult for Bombardier to hit its projected service debut, currently set for the end of 2015. According to Reuters, the CSeries has completed less than 15% of a planned 244o testing hours.

In spite of Bombardier’s efforts to recover lost ground, can the CSeries survive in the brutally competitive, but also highly profitable, short-to-medium-range airliner market?

Here’s how it stacks up against the competition:

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