The second biggest Mexican airline is size Interjet is reportedly nearing the decision on what to do next with its fleet of Russian-built Superjet100 aircraft. However, media reports are contradictory at the moment: some suggest that the carrier is determined to get rid of SSJ100s, while others suggest the Russian jet might stay in Mexico.
Interjet is nearing a deal to acquire 12 Airbus A220s, Reuters reported quoting industry sources on October 4, 2019. Airbus regional jets are to replace Interjet’s currently grounded SSJ100s, the publication also stated.
Meanwhile, two days later an opposite message came from Russian media. On October 6, 2019, Igor Shuvalov, CEO Russian state development corporation VEB, reportedly told country’s reporters that the Mexican airline would continue to use SSJ100 as parties found “mutually acceptable solutions” to the aircraft problem, while some issues regarding servicing and maintenance kits supplies remained.
“We carried our negotiations and agreed that no harsh measures will be taken by each party,” Shuvalov said on Russian news channel, as reported by the country’s news agency TASS. According to the VEB CEO, the aircraft were still in use.
In August 2019, Russian business daily Vedomosti reported that Interjet was looking to oust “as much as possible” Superjet 100 planes from its fleet, outlining reportedly the airline’s difficult financial situation as the main reason for the sale.
Vedomosti was not the only publication that pointed to questionable Interjet’s finance. In late August 2019, the airline even released a statement in which it publicly denied being “technically bankrupt”.
Interjet fleet of SSJ100 is composed of 22 aircraft, an average age of which is 5.7 years. However, its operations have been plagued by a series of maintenance issues resulting in prolonged grounding of the aircraft. Currently, only six of the airline’s Superjets are flying, according to planespotters.net data.
AeroTime News has contacted Interjet for comment, but has not yet received a response by the time of publication of this article.