Russia’s Voronezh Aircraft Production Association (VASO) has announced the production flight testing of the last of the batch of Ukrainian-designed Antonov An-148-100 regional jets for the Russian Defence Ministry.
The aircraft is the 15th and final of the series of An-148s produced under contract for the Ministry.
Once the final aircraft completes testing and is delivered to its customer, VASO will curtail all An-148 production processes until and unless it receives new orders.
Considering the ongoing tensions in Russo-Ukranian relations, the future of the programme in Russia appears doubtful, but the manufacturer assures that it will continue to provide support of the fleet in operation.
VASO produced its first serial An-148 in 2009. In almost a decade, the company built just 35 of the regional jets, two of which were destroyed in fatal accidents.
The Russian manufacturer plans instead to shift its focus on producing the Ilyushin IL-96 wide-body (including its latest modification, the passenger IL-96-400M) and the Il-112 turboprop light transport, as well as supplying components for other Russian-built aircraft.