The Russian built Sukhoi SSJ100 has never had the most stellar reputation.
It’s poor maintenance record has left it with few fans and the only major buyer of late – and you can be sure the Russian government had a hand in it, is Aeroflot.
Yesterday was a double whammy day for the handful that have been sold by Sukhoi to Western Airlines.
Brussels Airlines has been wet-leasing SSJ100’s from Irish carrier CityJet – indeed slightly worryingly for those of us brought up in the age of the crashing soviet air industry – one has flown over me most days on its way to BHX. Their testing record was far from incident free.
The lack of reliability, coupled to spare parts and technical support issues, have marred its usefulness and Brussels – who claim to like the aircraft, (but then airlines always do as who wants to upset a supplier?), didn’t seem to mind suggesting it suffers from “childhood diseases”, because of its youthfulness.
This came on the same day that another operator, Mexican airline Interjet, is to retire the earliest examples it flies – yes retire them – and look for possible alternatives. It has 22 with 3 more due. The first are only 6 years old.
Neither company suggested they’ll be looking for newer versions.