Mitsubishi Heavy to Pull Plug on Passenger Jet Project

Economy Technology

Tokyo, Feb. 6 (Jiji Press)--Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. <7011> plans to put an end to its project to create Japan's first domestically developed small passenger jet, people familiar with the matter said Monday.

The SpaceJet project has effectively been frozen since 2020 due to delays in development work and a slump in aircraft demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Japanese heavy machinery maker now thinks that the project is unlikely to be profitable, according to the people.

The SpaceJet project, which kicked off in 2008, is the first attempt by Japan to develop a passenger aircraft from scratch since the government-led development of the YS-11 turboprop in the 1960s.

But Mitsubishi Heavy repeatedly postponed the first delivery of a production model, initially slated for 2013, because of a lack of experience and expertise in passenger aircraft development.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press