Bombardier and Lufthansa work together very closely. The German airline has helped to make Bombardier the world’s fourth largest aircraft manufacturer. The next round of close cooperation is now starting
Lufthansa persuaded the Canadian corporation Bombardier to build a 50-seat aircraft for regional use back in 1987. Bombardier used its highly successful Challenger 600 business jet as the basis for design of the new Canadair Regional Jet (CRJ). Lufthansa brought its first CRJ100 into service in 1992.
Bombardier went on to develop other, larger versions of its new aircraft and the CRJ100 soon became the basic model of a whole series. Bombardier was the only manufacturer able to supply planes of this kind – for use on short- and medium-haul routes with relatively low passenger loads. Currently, the Lufthansa Regional fleet consists of CRJ700s (70 seats) and CRJ900s (90 seats).
Lufthansa is continuing its close cooperation with Bombardier, and the Canadians are now working on a new brand family – the C-Series – that will set new standards of fuel economy. Advances in engine design will make the planes much quieter, and they will carry more passengers than their CRJ predecessors. Bombardier presented its conceptual specification in 2004, but did not start work on the project until 2008, when Lufthansa confirmed its intention to order 30 C-Series planes to join the SWISS fleet.