Chinese state-owned aircraft OEM Comac has begun the detailed design stage for its widebody commercial passenger aircraft the C929.
According to reports from Chinese media Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China’s (COMAC) vice president Qi Xuefeng confirmed progress with the C929 program at the China Air Transport Association (CATA) aviation conference last week.
“The C929 aircraft has entered into [the stage of] detailed design. At the same time, we are making efforts in the fields of hybrid, electric, hydrogen and other new energy aircraft to provide more economical, comfortable and environmentally friendly products,” Qi said at the conference organised by the.
The C929 airliner will have between 250 to 350 seats, and a range of 12,000km (7,450 miles). Development of the aircraft started in 2017 as a joint venture between COMAC and Russia state-owned UAC United Aircraft Corporation (UAC).
However, according to the report, Qi made no mention of Russian involvement in the project, and the “R” has been dropped from the name. Original timelines for the C929 had planned for the aircraft’s first flight to occur this year.
Neither Comac or UAC have made comments recently about the joint venture and several media reports have indicated Russia has terminated the partnership.
COMAC’s C919 narrowbody aircraft, which is manufactured in China and is intended to compete with the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 began commercial operations earlier this year with China Eastern Airlines. The aircraft took more than 14 years to develop.