Mitsubishi Aircraft reiterates commitment to M90 certification

Mitsubishi Aircraft has reorganised its senior management, as it reiterates it commitment in getting its SpaceJet regional jet programme certificated. 

The Japanese airframer will be promoting company veteran Yasuhiko Kawaguchi to the role of executive chief engineer. Kawaguchi, who has 35 years of experience in Mitsubishi Aircraft and parent company Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), will oversee aircraft design and type certification. 

Mitsubishi Aircraft adds that Kawaguchi also “played a central role” in flight tests in the USA.

This fiscal year, Mitsubishi Aircraft will focus on “reorganising, improving the current design at aircraft level, and validating [flight test] data”. 

It adds that the coronavirus outbreak has forced it to shift its priorities from global development to “perseverance and determination to achieve type certification” on its M90 variant. 

FlightGlobal reported in late May that Mitsubishi will be closing all non-Japan locations and moving all SpaceJet activities back to its headquarters in Nagoya, in response to cost pressure. 

It also suspended development of the 76-seat M100 variant, and will halt all flight testing of the M90 variant. 

“This new, harsh business environment also necessitated the development of a new operating plan for this fiscal year that included resizing its organisation so that Mitsubishi Aircraft may endure and emerge from this crisis. The company’s priority will be on obtaining type certification for the SpaceJet M90,” the airframer says. 

MHI announced in April that it would halving the SpaceJet’s budget for the year ending 31 March 2021, as full-year losses on the programme widened. On 1 June, it closed the acquisition of Bombardier’s CRJ programme, a deal first announced in 2019.