Mitsubishi Formally Cancels Airliner Program


After a 15-year development program plagued with setbacks, Mitsubishi has finally thrown in the towel on its SpaceJet airliner project. The aircraft was aimed at the small single-aisle market now dominated by Embraer and Airbus, and the Japanese mega-company determined it was never going to make the kind of inroads it would need to make a go of it. The announcement was buried in financial reports and said the company was “unable to find sufficient business feasibility to resume development” 

One of the main issues was that the program had suffered so many delays that the design was quite dated before it even got into service. Among those delays were fundamental issues involving airframe strength and wiring design. The company is not ruling out another stab at aircraft design. It says it may use the hard lessons learned from the SpaceJet to build a next-generation fighter.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.

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  1. Just like the short lived corporate jet. I almost went to work for them out of college when the jet was just getting going. Maybe they should stick to ground based vehicles?

  2. I wonder if this has potential ramifications for the CRJ fleet, as Mitsubishi’s justification for buying the CRJ type certificates and maintenance program was to build a support structure for the SpaceJet.

    • The track record of Japanese companies in general and Mitsubishi in particular supporting legacy products is quite good. See for example their continued support of the Mu2 such as via the website Japanese companies have an entirely different idea of how customers should be treated than western companies.