S7 airline is interested in buying several SSJ100, but would like the aircraft to be custom-built for it.

S7 has filed a preliminary application for the purchase of 100 Sukhoi SuperJet (SSJ100) passenger aircraft, said the newspaper citing sources close to the company and the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC).

A representative of the Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company (manufacturer of SSJ, part of the UAC) confirmed to RBC that the S7 airline really does have an interest in the SSJ100 aircraft, adding they are discussing a contract.

According to Vedomosti, S7 wants a shortened SuperJet reducing the number of passenger seats from 98 to 75. Such an aircraft would be effective on regional routes within Russia, said the source.

"The aircraft will be redesigned to satisfy the S7 requirements but it will still look like any other SSJ100”, said a source close to the airline’s management.

By the end of 2017, SSJ aircraft were in use with Aeroflot, Gazprom Avia, the airlines Yakutia, Yamal, IrAero, Azimut, RusJet, Interjet (Mexico), CityJet (Ireland), and also the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry for Emergencies of Russia and the special flight detachment "Russia". According to the GSS, since the commencement of commercial operations, more than one hundred SSJ100 have flown more than 240,000 commercial flights for a total of more than 370,000 flight hours.

However, the SSJ100’s performance is said to be inferior to foreign planes: their average flying time in Russia up to 2016 was not more than four hours a day, while the average flying time of Airbus and Boeing aircraft is nine hours a day. The reason for this shortfall is more frequent breakdowns and longer delivery times for spare parts.