Saratov Airlines receives first An-148
Russia’s Saratov Airlines has announced the delivery of its first Antonov An-148-100B regional jet.
On November 12 the Saratov Airlines welcome the aircraft with tail number RA-61703 at its base in Saratov airport. The jet was flown here from the Voronezh Aircraft Production Association (known as VASO) facility, where it underwent maintenance and re-painting. This new type will replace the ageing Yakovlev Yak-42D in the carrier’s fleet.
The Russian airline will begin commercial operation of the aircraft after completing certification and undergoing preparatory procedures. The first passenger flight for the An-148 in Saratov’s fleet is set for the end of this year.
Saratov Airlines is subleasing An-148 from Rossiya Airlines (part of Aeroflot Group). A second of Rossiya’s aircraft, with registration number RA-61705, is currently being worked on at the VASO and is set to be transferred to Saratov by the end of November.
Rossiya used to have six An-148-100Bs in its fleet, all of which leased from Ilyushin Finance Co. Rossiya stopped operating the type in spring of 2015, but continued making leasing payments. It is expected that the airline will hand over two more An-148s to Saratov.
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