The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is planning to make the Russian Ilyushin IL-114 aircraft in India to offer the plane in the 70-seater turboprop category to Indian airlines for regional commercial flights, reports Economic Times.
According to the report, HAL has tied up with Public Joint Stock Company (PJSC, or Ilyushin) for conducting maintenance service of the aircraft in India and later to assemble the plane in the country.
“PJSC is working on civil certification of this aircraft, that is likely to come by 2021. After that they get European (aviation regulator) certification also for using this aircraft in civilian space. We signed a non-disclosure agreement with Ilyushin for doing maintenance of this aircraft in India for its customers from India and nearby countries,” HAL chairman R Madhavan was quoted in the report as saying.
“This aircraft is an ideal replacement of a (popular turboprop used by airlines in India for regional routes). It comes at three-fourth of that price,” he said.
The Ilyushin IL-114-300 has engines of Pratt & Whitney, contemporary interiors and avionics from the west.
“While we plan to begin with maintenance of this aircraft, we plan to make it here if it gets a good market. We will know that (if it gets orders from Indian carriers for Udan or regional flights) in 3 to 4 years,” Madhavan said.
He said that the Russian craft will come at a price of around $17-18 million aginst $22 million of the alternative that Indian airlines are currently using. He added that the IL-114 can be used both in the regional cargo and passenger market.