Bombardier announced that Seattle-based Horizon Air has converted two of seven previously acquired Q400 NextGen aircraft options to firm orders.
The airline retains its options on another five Q400 NextGen aircraft. Horizon Air and its sister carrier, Alaska Airlines are subsidiaries of Alaska Air Group.
Based on the list price of the Q400 NextGen aircraft, the purchase agreement is valued at approximately $70.1 million US.
“As we grow our operations, we continue to rely on the Q400 aircraft’s versatility, speed and comfort to provide a satisfying experience for our customers,” said David Campbell, President and Chief Operations Officer, Horizon Air. “In 2014, Horizon Air ventured into the Alaskan frontier, successfully launching the Q400 NextGen aircraft on new routes between Anchorage and Fairbanks, and Anchorage and Kodiak.”
“Horizon Air is one of the most successful North American regional carriers and a marquee customer that continues to showcase the operational flexibility and performance capability of the Q400 aircraft,” said Steve Young, Regional Vice President, Sales, North America, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “The Q400 aircraft has long been the backbone of Horizon Air’s network success and continues to be the airline’s choice as it increases its fleet to 54 aircraft. We are delighted that the Q400 aircraft retains its status as North America’s preferred turboprop.”
Horizon Air’s Q400 aircraft are equipped with Head-up Guidance Systems (HGS) for all-weather operations, Wide Area Augmentation Systems (WAAS) with approach guidance (LPV) for ILS-like landing minima at remote runways and RNP AR 0.1 to fly curved approaches to airports in difficult terrain. The unmatched capability to land and take off on challenging runways in unsettled weather is another benefit of the Q400 aircraft.
Established in 1981, Horizon Air was acquired in 1986 by Alaska Air Group, Inc., the parent company of Alaska Airlines. At its start, the airline operated two aircraft and served three destinations in Washington state. Today, Horizon flies its 76-seat Q400 aircraft on behalf of Alaska Airlines and serves 43 cities in the western United States, Canada and Mexico. Horizon Air, which is also a codeshare partner of American Airlines and Delta Air Lines, operates both the longest (Seattle to Fresno, 748 miles/1,204 km) and shortest (Pullman to Lewiston, 26 miles/42 km) turboprop routes currently being served by regional carriers in the U.S.
In 2014, Bombardier and Horizon Air signed a five-year heavy maintenance agreement whereby Bombardier will perform heavy maintenance tasks for the airline’s fleet of Q400 aircraft at Bombardier’s service centre in Tuscon, Arizona.