In what would become the largest order for the troubled CSeries passenger jet program, Bombardier confirmed Thursday morning that Delta Air Lines Inc. has placed a firm order for 75 CS100 aircraft with options for an additional 50 more.
Based on the list price, the Montreal-based company valued the order at approximately US$5.6 billion.
Bombardier is expected to start delivering the planes to Delta in 2018.
“Given Delta’s position as one of the world’s largest and most respected airlines, this deal is a strong endorsement of the CSeries as the best performing aircraft in the 100-150 passenger class,” Bombardier chief executive Alain Bellemare said in a statement on Thursday.
“The addition of Delta to our marquee CSeries customer list gives us tremendous momentum as we approach entry-into-service this summer.”
Bombardier has faced political controversy as of late, and it appears the company is banking on the success of its CSeries jets.
The order follows news that Bombardier’s revenue for the first-quarter fell to US$3.14 billion, compared with nearly US$4.4 billion in the first three months of 2015.
The Quebec government offered the company a US$1 billion lifeline for its CSeries planes, but Premier Philippe Couillard said the first of two payments has been delayed due to unspecified issues including liquidity.
Bombardier has also requested in December that Ottawa match Quebec’s funding, and the federal government has said it is carefully studying the request.
Reports suggest the CSeries program is two years behind schedule, and has incurred about US$2 billion in cost overruns.
But the aerospace and transportation manufacturer has recently inked deals to sell the planes, including a letter of intent earlier this year where Air Canada would buy 45 CSeries jets, with an option to purchase up to 30 more of the aircraft.
Swiss Airlines is scheduled to be the first carrier to put the plane into commercial service this summer.
The company said that as a result of the Delta order, the CSeries is expected to enter into service with a backlog of more than 300 aircraft.
Bombardier is also scheduled to hold its annual general meeting on Friday.