MIAMI — Bombardier Commercial Aircraft announced this morning that Chorus Aviation signed a firm purchase agreement for five CRJ900s, to be operated by Jazz Aviation under the Air Canada Express banner. The order also includes purchase rights for five additional aircraft.

Based on the manufacturer’s list prices, the firm order is valued at $229 million, and could increase to $467 million if Chorus would exercise all of its purchase rights.

The new aircraft will be leased under Jazz’s Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) with Air Canada. Deliveries will start at the beginning of 2017.

The CRJ900 will be configured in a dual class with 76 seats with 12 seats in Business Class and 64 seats in Economy, including 20 Preferred seats which offer greater legroom. This configuration has become a standard for North American operators of the aircraft. Every seat will offer in-flight entertainment and GoGo onboard internet access.

“The addition of these new CRJ900 aircraft will continue Jazz’s fleet renewal and growth program that began in 2011, and provide unit operating costs that are amongst the lowest of any regional aircraft,” said Joseph Randell, President and CEO of Chorus. “These efficient aircraft are an important component of our cost reduction plans and will be an outstanding complement to our fleet.”

“Ensuring passenger comfort while maintaining cost efficiency is a top priority for us, and the CRJ900 aircraft allows us to achieve both,” said Colin Copp, President of Jazz Aviation. “To support Air Canada’s new fleet standard, the new 76-seat aircraft will be configured with three classes — business, preferred economy and economy.”

“We are delighted that Chorus and Jazz continue to put their confidence in Bombardier and its products — providing passengers with outstanding service from coast to coast in Canada and the United States,” said Fred Cromer, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.

Reconfiguration of current CRJ705s and Q400s

Jazz also announced that Bombardier will assist its maintenance and engineering division to reconfigure its current 75-seat CRJ705s and 74-seat Q400s, in order to add additional seats. The 16 CRJ705s operated by Jazz will be reconfigured to 76-seats while its 21 Dash 8 Q400s will have an additional seat row, taking the total to 78.

Based on the CRJ900, the CRJ705 is allowed to a maximum of 75 seats for the operation of the aircraft by regional carriers. All the cabin modifications will be completed by the end of 2017.