Commercial aircraft manufacturer Embraer S.A. detailed a new contract worth up to $873 million from Widerøe, the largest regional carrier serving Scandinavia. If fully invoked, the airline will receive up to 15 of Embraer’s new E-Jets E2 series aircraft, of various sizes. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2018, as Widerøe modernizes its current fleet of turboprop jets.

"Our decision to choose the Embraer family of next generation E2 aircraft for our move into jet operations is based on the need for a high-quality passenger experience, ease and flexibility of operations, and lowest through life costs," commented Stein Nilsen, Widerøe CEO.

The E-Jet E2 series is a family of narrow-body, medium-range twin-engine aircraft that will have a commercial debut in 2018. Three different models will be offered, and the Widerøe order includes options for the E175-E2, E190-E2, and E195-E2, which the OEM stated would give Widerøe the ability to grow its fleet with aircraft from 80 to more than 130 seats, as market requirements may indicate.

With this order, Embraer’s E-Jets E2 backlog totals 275 firm orders from airlines and leasing companies, plus letters of intent, options, and purchase rights for another 415 aircraft giving a total of 690 commitments.

Widerøe presently maintains a fleet of 41 Bombardier Dash 8 aircraft, serving 41 destinations in Norway and six more in Denmark, Sweden, and the U.K.

The new contract consists of three firm orders for the E190-E2 and purchase rights for 12 more E2 series aircraft, including the E175-E2, E190-E2, and E195-E2.

Widerøe will configure the E190-E2s in a single-class layout with 114 seats.

“It’s always an important moment for Embraer when we add a new airline to our family of operators. It’s even better to be part of a step change in that customer’s operations; our next generation E190-E2s will also be the first jets in Widerøe’s fleet. The opportunities for both Embraer and Widerøe as the airline seeks to expand and move beyond only turboprop operations, present an exciting future. A great way to start 2017,” said Arjan Meijer, chief commercial officer, Embraer Commercial Aviation.