Air Canada has rolled out its first Airbus A220 in company colours and also announced it’s pushing up its entry to service by more than three months. The aircraft, with its black “Zorro mask” livery came out of the paint shop at Airbus’s Mirabel manufacturing plant last week. It still has a battery of preflight tests and interior finishing to be completed before first flight, likely before the end of the year. Then it will do some training hops before being put to work in January.
The airline originally announced that A220 service would be inaugurated with flights from Montreal to Seattle and Vancouver to San Jose in May but it more recently said it will start A220 service on domestic routes on Jan. 16. The accelerated schedule likely has something to do with the extended grounding of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. The A220s will seat 137 passengers in two classes and include seatback entertainment and wi-fi on all flights. Air Canada will be the second North American carrier with the former CSeries airliner. Delta has been flying the aircraft for six months.