tu204
Posts: 1409
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 12:36 am

Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Fri Sep 29, 2006 5:24 am

This is an interview (in Russian) with CEO of Ilyushin Finans Co., which a few days ago signed a firm contract worth 200million $ for 5 Tu-204-100 aircraft.
http://www.avia.ru/inter/584/

Basically he says that Iran Air Tours purchased 5 Tu-204-100 aircraft with 5 options with all the bells and whistles available: in-seat IFE/video on demand, english 2-man cocpit (looks like those manuals I translated will be going to good use  Wink )
The also want the PS-90A2 engine installed instead of the PS-90A (new, 10% more power, more effecient, more reliable) because they want to be able to call up extra power for hot and high takeoffs. (This being a pain for Tupolev because we have to certify the plane with this engine and rewrite the bloody software!)
Expected delivery is July 2008 (in my opinion this is BS, we have 4 more 204-120CE's for China, 3 for Cubana, 4 for Volga Dnepr that we have to deliver before the Iranians get theirs! My guess would be July 2009)

He also said that the Iranians will be leasing 2 of Kras Air's IL-96-300s for a short time to see whether or not they wish to order some of their own. If they decide on it, they will get 3-4 IL-96's. They are also looking at the Su-100 regional jet.
I do not dream about movie stars, they must dream about me for I am real and they are not. - Alexander Popov
 
cedarjet
Posts: 8101
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 1:12 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Fri Sep 29, 2006 9:09 am

I think the US position makes some fairly hefty orders for Russian planes inevitable. Iran has a massive domestic air travel market, this is after all a wealthy nation with a spread out population of 70m. Flights from Tehran to Mashad are like, 12.40, 12.55, 1.00, 1.20, 1.40, 1.45 etc. And while it's like Disneyland for a fan of old jets, the country simply can't get by on the Noah's Ark of ex Air France 727s, leased Tu154s, ex military 707s.

I flew on a Mahan Tu204 from Tehran to Dubai and I thought it was pretty poor, instead of smooth plastic trays and fittings, it was painted fibreglass, which was bubbly in places and chipped in others. And this was a fairly new aircraft. And the temperature in the cabin remained swelteringly hot for the whole two hours. The performance was good (as a 757 clone, it should be) but I was disappointed because I would like to see the US policy bite Boeing to show the foolishness of "we're not talking to you or you or you" but the product from the opposition is not what it could be.

Iran is a modern and tech-friendly place and everyone who works for the airlines there want western equipment, preferably Boeing. No-one ever expressed any enthusiasm for the Russian planes I spoke to (one pilot said if his airline had to choose between the 1972-build 727s and the 90s-build Tu154s, they'd keep the 727s). No disrespect to you personally, o eponymous "Tu204", but if the Russians could build planes as sophisticated as Airbus or Boeing, the market would be wide open. And my experience on the Tu204 made me feel like you're close but falling on the final hurdle out of cheapness.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
a300
Posts: 362
Joined: Sun May 09, 2004 9:24 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Fri Sep 29, 2006 9:04 pm

I actually think that the Tu204 might just be what Iran Air/Iran Air Tours need. The problem with the Tu204 has always been the PS90 engines , with the Iranians wanting the RR ones. The PS90A2 might solve the dilemma. I am sure that the Iranians can get the interior of the plane as they wish. Remember that the Mahan Air aircraft are actually wet leased from Air Cairo.
Boland Aseman Jayegah Man Ast.
 
redflyer
Posts: 3881
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2005 3:30 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Fri Sep 29, 2006 11:09 pm

Quoting Cedarjet (Reply 1):
I think the US position makes some fairly hefty orders for Russian planes inevitable.

Didn't realize the U.S. was the only one with an embargo.

Quoting Cedarjet (Reply 1):
No disrespect to you personally, o eponymous "Tu204", but if the Russians could build planes as sophisticated as Airbus or Boeing

The Russians can build planes as sophisticated as -- and often times more sophisticated than -- Airbus or Boeing. The fold-down trays and the cabin service -- including the the flight crew's desire to keep the cabin at a higher temp -- are not indicative of the quality or sophistication of the aircraft or its manufacturer. In fact, I'd be willing to bet those cheap painted fiberglass trays were home-grown and installed by the Iranians in order to save costs.
My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
 
cedarjet
Posts: 8101
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 1:12 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sat Sep 30, 2006 1:26 am

Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 3):
Didn't realize the U.S. was the only one with an embargo.

My understanding is that it's soley a US embargo. The country who's position most closely mimicks that of the US is of course the UK, but we have full diplomatic relations, BA fly to Tehran every day, my buddy works for a pharmaceutical company who do a lot of business with Iran. There may be some weapons which are export-banned, but I'm sure the parents of Airbus (France, UK, Germany etc) would be delighted to sell Iran a new generation of airliners, if it wasn't for the fact that 40% of an Airbus is Made In The USA. See also: Cuba.

Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 3):
The Russians can build planes as sophisticated as -- and often times more sophisticated than -- Airbus or Boeing.

I don't know. As safe, yes. As sophisticated, I doubt it. Just compare the interior of an A319 to the interior of the newest Tu154 (they only delivered the last one a few months ago).

Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 3):
I'd be willing to bet those cheap painted fiberglass trays were home-grown and installed by the Iranians in order to save costs.

I don't think so. It's not Iran's style, and in a country swimming in gas and oil revenue, they don't need to make those kind of savings. The materials and finish just aren't as good as on an Airbus or a Boeing. Like I said in my first post, I would love to see some big orders for Russian planes, to try to convince the Yanks their policy of "I'm not talking to you" is a nonsense, but the Iranians are major "not Boeing / ain't going" kinda guys, and Russia just aren't doing enough to bring their product up to par.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
A342
Posts: 4017
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2005 11:05 pm

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sat Sep 30, 2006 2:44 am

Quoting Cedarjet (Reply 4):
As sophisticated, I doubt it. Just compare the interior of an A319 to the interior of the newest Tu154 (they only delivered the last one a few months ago).

As always, the customer selects the interior. If they wanted, they could surely have another one. But maybe designing a new one for just one aircraft (ok, maybe 10) is too expensive.
Exceptions confirm the rule.
 
afay1
Posts: 1206
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2001 2:37 pm

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sat Sep 30, 2006 11:56 am

I tend to agree that it was an Iranian choice of interior or bad luck on the deal. I have been on Aeroflot Tu-154Ms with the refurb interior and the tray tables are fine (the non-refurb Tu154M ones aren't so nice and the Tu-154B2 of Aeroflot-Nord has metal ones painted battleship grey); so Iran probably just got or specified an old kit. Whether the air conditioning is inherent in the design of the aircraft for a colder climate, or cheapness on the Iranian part is a different question. After all the US did make an entire class of guided-missle cruisers meant for Iran called the Kidd Class as they were thankfully never delivered due to the revolution, but they were aftectionately known in our navy as the Ayatollah Class and had awesome air conditioning upgrades...
 
tu204
Posts: 1409
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 12:36 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sat Sep 30, 2006 3:52 pm

I have to say that the interior of the new Tu204-300s that went to Vladivostok are pretty good, at "Airbus level" so to speak. I have never flown Mahan air but I have been in Sibir's 204's and they were pretty crappy. It depends on the carrier really.
I do not dream about movie stars, they must dream about me for I am real and they are not. - Alexander Popov
 
StearmanNut
Posts: 344
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2004 9:54 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sun Oct 01, 2006 2:06 am

I remember some years back when TU was courting MEA for planes. They provided one of the new TU 204's and took a contingent of MEA executives and pilots on a tour from Kuwait to CDG.

On the way, everyone was going over the plane with a fine tooth comb and looking at all the amenities.

On approach into CDG, the plane encountered turbulence and at one point was in a 90 deg. bank to recover. Three of the seats in the cabin became detached, dumping some MEA execs onto the floor.

Turns out that the seats were only spot welded to the floor. Also, the pilots and all on the ride found that spot welding and sheet steel was used in places where safer, more conventional fastening materiel and aluminum were the norm in Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

Needless to say, MEA will not ever fly TU airplanes.
If wishes were horses, a Tail Dragger I would fly...
 
cobra27
Posts: 939
Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 6:57 pm

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sun Oct 01, 2006 3:09 am

$40 million for an airplane with around 200 seats is really cheap to buy. What about operating economics?
 
BA
Posts: 10133
Joined: Fri May 19, 2000 11:06 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sun Oct 01, 2006 11:02 am

Quoting StearmanNut (Reply 8):
I remember some years back when TU was courting MEA for planes. They provided one of the new TU 204's and took a contingent of MEA executives and pilots on a tour from Kuwait to CDG.

On the way, everyone was going over the plane with a fine tooth comb and looking at all the amenities.

On approach into CDG, the plane encountered turbulence and at one point was in a 90 deg. bank to recover. Three of the seats in the cabin became detached, dumping some MEA execs onto the floor.

Turns out that the seats were only spot welded to the floor. Also, the pilots and all on the ride found that spot welding and sheet steel was used in places where safer, more conventional fastening materiel and aluminum were the norm in Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

Needless to say, MEA will not ever fly TU airplanes.

I don't recall MEA ever having the slightest interest for Tupolev aircraft.

MEA was the first airline in the Middle East to operate the A321. They've been flying them since 1997, so I don't see why they'd even be interested in the TU-204 which is quite similar in many ways.

They are going to place an A319 order within a month.
"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
 
redflyer
Posts: 3881
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2005 3:30 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Sun Oct 01, 2006 11:12 am

Quoting StearmanNut (Reply 8):
On approach into CDG, the plane encountered turbulence and at one point was in a 90 deg. bank to recover. Three of the seats in the cabin became detached, dumping some MEA execs onto the floor.

That's some turbulence to require a 90 degree bank to recover. What did it do, fly through the vortex generated by an A380?  duck 

Seriously, the story sounds like one of those aviation legends that gets bigger and bigger with time.
My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
 
StearmanNut
Posts: 344
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2004 9:54 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Mon Oct 02, 2006 4:17 am

Actually, the story is from a friend of mine, Ghassan Khalil, who was an MEA pilot at the time. He was on this flight as a pilot/evaluator. I have no reason to doubt Ghassan. He was always a pretty straight shooter. By the way, Ghassan is no longer with us.
If wishes were horses, a Tail Dragger I would fly...
 
A342
Posts: 4017
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2005 11:05 pm

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Mon Oct 02, 2006 4:21 am

Quoting BA (Reply 10):
They are going to place an A319 order within a month.

Really ? 5 months ago, I would have believed it. But now ?
Exceptions confirm the rule.
 
BA
Posts: 10133
Joined: Fri May 19, 2000 11:06 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:41 am

Quoting A342 (Reply 13):
Really ? 5 months ago, I would have believed it. But now ?

Yes, the CEO was interviewed last week in a Lebanese economics journal. They will still go ahead with an aircraft order, but the initial number of planes may be reduced from what they initially had planned before the war.

They are needed because MEA's current fleet is stretched.

Look out for an announcement within a month.
"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran
 
yak42
Posts: 662
Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2000 6:17 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Mon Oct 02, 2006 11:25 pm

Quoting StearmanNut (Reply 8):
Turns out that the seats were only spot welded to the floor.

I dont believe they would have spot welded seats to the floor. Seats need to be removable.
 
tu204
Posts: 1409
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 12:36 am

RE: Iran Air Tours Buys Tu-204-100

Tue Oct 03, 2006 3:47 pm

Quoting StearmanNut (Reply 8):
Turns out that the seats were only spot welded to the floor. Also, the pilots and all on the ride found that spot welding and sheet steel was used in places where safer, more conventional fastening materiel and aluminum were the norm in Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

That sounds like a tall tale. Seats on the Tu204, 154, 144 are secured to the floor with bolt like things. They lock it on the rails that run down the entire fusulage, permitting you to change the configuration of the aircraft. As a matter of fact, the Russian transportation board requires seats to withstand a 16G deceleration-same as the American's, while Airbus seats are rated at 6G (correct me if I am wrong). But since the aircraft itself can only withstand 5G's maximum, I think you see the problem - your friend would have disintegrated in the air and the seat would be his last worry  Wink It would also be impossible to have them spot welded because the floor is not metal at all - only the rails which the seats lock on to. It seems extremely far-fetched to me. It also seems highly unlikely that the aircraft would have encountered anything past 50 degree bank because of terbulance - especially because the computer would have screamed "bank angle" and leveled the plane out by itself. Sorry, I am just not buying it.
I do not dream about movie stars, they must dream about me for I am real and they are not. - Alexander Popov