Rumour has it that if Bombardier is to launch the CSeries (and I stress the word “if”), the manufacturer will select Rockwell Collins to provide the flightdeck avionics.
Bombardier has been working closely with Rockwell on flightdeck avionics for the 110/130-seat CSeries for the last few years, although it has held discussions with Thales and Honeywell. Commonality with the Boeing 787 avionics suite (manufactured by Rockwell) is said to be playing a role in the decision.
Asked to respond, the official word from Bombardier is: “We are not able to comment on the CSeries suppliers selection as we are currently in a final ‘downselection’ process. As you may be aware, we only announced the selection of Pratt & Whitney (power plant) and AVIC 1 (centre fuselage) for the CSeries program, subject to the launch to the CSeries aircraft.”
The key phrase, of course, is “subject to launch”. The CSeries might very well never see the light of day. Some well-placed sources feel downright certain that it won’t.
Time will tell. And that time is nearing. Bombardier has said it is waiting until calendar 2008 before announcing a launch decision. As of yesterday, the clock is ticking. (CSeries specs from Bombardier's site)
Oh, and Happy New Year folks. I took a little break over the holiday. Now I'm back to business.