Rolls-Royce could power Chinese aircraft

Rupert Reid China Plus Published: 2017-06-17 16:09:37
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Rolls-Royce has indicated that they may enter the market to supply engines for new Chinese aircraft.

That's according to specialist publication LSE, who reports that the British aerospace engineering firm would seek to enter the market 'when the opportunity arises.'

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

At present, China's latest aircraft, the Comac C919, is powered by CFM International's LEAP series engines.

However, it's not unusual for aircraft models to be offered with a choice of different engines, so perhaps Rolls-Royce intends to offer an alternative power plant for the C919.

Alternatively, it could be that they're intending to launch an engine to be offered on a future Chinese aircraft.

Either way, a choice of engines is generally a good thing for airlines - who can shop-around for the best prices, and customers, who ultimately benefit from lower fares.

The C919 will become a common sight in China over the next few years, and ultimately looks set to be sold around the world, too.

As we reported in May, Air Asia and British Airways are now both understood to be actively considering adding the model to their fleets.

The C919 is built by the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (Comac) and offers a similar passenger capacity and range as rival aircraft made by Boeing and Airbus.

Both Air Asia and British Airways currently have large Airbus short-haul fleets. British Airways is owned by International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG) and so an order from the parent company could also see Comac's aircraft flying for other IAG companies such as Aer Lingus and Iberia.

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