De Havilland set to pause Dash 8 Q400 production, future uncertain
Manufacturer De Havilland Canada (DHC) is set to pause production once the current Dash 8-400 backlog is completed, indicated the company.
The Canadian aircraft manufacturer notified suppliers to stop delivering parts to avoid building the so-called “whitetails” – completed aircraft ahead of confirmed orders, a report by Leeham News previously stated.
Currently, DHC has 17 Dash 8-400 orders scheduled for customers in 2021. There are two more Dash 8s in the backlog without identified clients, read the report.
De Havilland Canada will deliver Dash 8-400s to such customers as: Air Tanzania (one), Biman Bangladesh Airlines (two), Conair (two), Elin (three), Ethiopian Airlines (four), PAL Express (one), TAAG Angola Airlines (four). Two aircraft were assigned to unidentified customers.
“We continue to sell, deliver and support the Dash 8-400 while taking appropriate measures to safeguard our people and our business,” said DHC in a statement to Aerotime News. “Our manufacturing operations have capacity to produce aircraft at our Downsview facility into 2023. However, we will not be producing “whitetails” and market demand will guide our future production plans for the Dash 8-400 aircraft.”
The manufacturer said it is in the process of investigating different scenarios for the program’s future and will communicate more on the topic when plans are approved and confirmed.
“We are committed to nothing less than re-positioning the De Havilland Canada brand to the forefront of the regional aircraft and Canadian aerospace industry,” added DHC.
In November 2020, DHC delivered the first of three new Dash 8-400 to Biman Bangladesh Airlines, which was the manufacturer’s last delivery so far. The purchase agreement between the airline and the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) was signed in September 2018. The order is valued at an estimate of $106 million. The flag carrier of Bangladesh has already acquired two Dash 8-400 aircraft in 2015 and 2018.
In October 2020, two Dash 8-400 aircraft were delivered to Ethiopian Airlines, including the airline’s milestone 30th Dash 8-400 aircraft.
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