ozark1986
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CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:29 pm

I need some help. I know that comparing CRJ700 with DASH8 Q400 is like apples and oranges, but can someone help me understand the differences in average flight cycle operating costs between these 2 commuter planes? Is the Q400 that much cheaper on a percentage basis compared to the CRJ700. Are there any advantages to the CRJ700? I know this is quite an open ended thread, but....
 
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STT757
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:57 pm

Quoting ozark1986 (Thread starter):
Is the Q400 that much cheaper on a percentage basis compared to the CRJ700. Are there any advantages to the CRJ700? I know this is quite an open ended thread, but....

From what i've read the Q400 has the advantage on routes up to 500 miles, after that the economic advantage of the Q400 begins to decline vs regional jets like the CR7.
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fpetrutiu
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:24 pm

Quoting STT757 (Reply 1):
From what i've read the Q400 has the advantage on routes up to 500 miles, after that the economic advantage of the Q400 begins to decline vs regional jets like the CR7.

Very true, the jet has a speed advantage, it can do more cycles in a day (over 500 miles) than a turboprop. But at less than 500nm range, the turboprop has a clear advantage. The trouble is that the ATR72 beats both at the 500nm range, at per flight operating costs. The Q400 can do more cycles since it's faster, but it will burn a lot more fuel too. The ATR72 is very efficient, but a bit slower.
 
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STT757
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:30 pm

I wish Pinnacle would exercise the options they have with Bombadier for additional Q400s for UA, the Q400 would be perfect for intra-California and Denver hub routes. Those places have lots of UA routes of 500 miles or less.
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:40 pm

Quoting fpetrutiu (Reply 2):

Very true, the jet has a speed advantage, it can do more cycles in a day (over 500 miles) than a turboprop

Bingo. That dramatically increases revenue per aircraft. And revenue per pilot, if you look at it that way.

At first glance, the Q400 wins hands down. But that isn't the case. It is an expensive new build aircraft. It turns out in a saturated RJ market with low residual values, there is little opportunity for Q400 right now.
 
ozark1986
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:41 pm

Thanks for the comments. I have heard that the ATR is more efficient on the shorter legs. Is it that there are so many dated RJs around, it is more cost advantageous than a new Q400?

[Edited 2011-09-23 06:44:24]
 
fpetrutiu
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:46 pm

Quoting STT757 (Reply 3):
I wish Pinnacle would exercise the options they have with Bombadier for additional Q400s for UA, the Q400 would be perfect for intra-California and Denver hub routes. Those places have lots of UA routes of 500 miles or less.

These days, they would be better off with ATR's, especially a combination of ATR42's and ATR72's. I believe only the Q400's are being offered today. The ATR family would give them more flexibility, more efficient airplanes, and it would cost them less money.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:49 pm

Quoting ozark1986 (Reply 5):
. Is it that there are so many dated RJs around, it is more cost advantageous than a new Q400?

Not sure what you mean, but if you are referring to ATR's and Q's, no, the RJ's have nothing to do with it. The ATR's are just cheaper to build. If you are referring to RJ's, you can basically pick up a lightly used RJ at the same price as a Q400. Depending on what routes would be used for, most people would buy an RJ since it offers more flexibility on longer flights.
 
ozark1986
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:50 pm

Quoting fpetrutiu (Reply 7):
Depending on what routes would be used for, most people would buy an RJ since it offers more flexibility on longer flights.

I am evaluating short haul (450 Nm +/-) flights, 4-6 cycles a day. It appears that the ATR family offer a more economical cost structure.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 3:04 pm

Quoting ozark1986 (Reply 8):
the ATR family

This is an indefensible, non-economic reason for objecting to an aircraft, but ... the ATR42 cannot satisfy my need for speed. I get seriously impatient on them. It's like a noisy balloon ride. On a typical short-haul I'd rather drive than fly one of those things.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 3:10 pm

Question guys,

Do the ATR's and Q400's have comparable economics when flying at the same speeds? Obviously the Q400 is the sprinter, but how is it when matching the ATR's slower speeds?
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 3:13 pm

I doubt anyone would know (but would be happy to find out too) because why buy the Dash if you are going to fly it slow. Why not just get the ATR?
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 3:18 pm

I was thinking along the lines for times that speed would be desired. Such as making up time in the air for a ground delay for example.
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 3:23 pm

Quoting Flighty (Reply 4):
there is little opportunity for Q400 right now.

I think if you look at it, the problem is that there is very little availability. Major carriers don't want 5 AC of a type in their fleet, they want 50. (just an example). From what I understand, if you wanted to order today Bombardier cannot deliver a DH8-4 to you for several years, meaning it would take even longer to gain critical mass in a fleet. I believe that airlines are suffering now for a lack of foresight years ago.

Quoting fpetrutiu (Reply 7):
Depending on what routes would be used for, most people would buy an RJ since it offers more flexibility on longer flights.

Most schedules that a Q (or an RJ) operate under are as part of a larger fleet containing both types. So they really don't go head to head as much as you would think, as you get the Q's you can cherry pick the most appropriate routes from the RJ's.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 5:55 pm

Quoting rdh3e (Reply 13):
if you wanted to order today Bombardier cannot deliver a DH8-4 to you for several years,

BBD is slowing production due to lack of demand. I'm pretty sure if an airline ask for 50 Q400 BBD would be glod to deliver all of them within a year or two.

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phllax
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:25 pm

There was an article in one of the magazines a few years back about Horizon and how they were comparing the Q to the CR7 on PDX-SEA. The Q actually beat the CR7 by 5 minutes on most of the comparisons and still used less fuel.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:42 pm

Quoting phllax (Reply 15):
There was an article in one of the magazines a few years back about Horizon and how they were comparing the Q to the CR7 on PDX-SEA. The Q actually beat the CR7 by 5 minutes on most of the comparisons and still used less fuel.

The Q is scheduled for 2:30 from FAT-SEA while the CR7 is scheduled for 2:00. However, my Q flight FAT-SEA was more like 2:10-2:15 and that was while taking a less direct route over the valleys due to T-storms in the Sierras.

I figured a 2:30 flight with no reclining seats on the Q was better than a 3 hour rental car drive to SMF or SJC in 100 degree heat. Having said that, it really wasn't as bad as I expected. The Q FAT-SEA was tolerable and well worth it for the ability to go non-stop. The free beer and wine went a long way to making it a decent flight too.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:53 pm

Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 10):
Do the ATR's and Q400's have comparable economics when flying at the same speeds? Obviously the Q400 is the sprinter, but how is it when matching the ATR's slower speeds?

The ATR would still be ahead. There are some airlines that are acctually flying them slower to save on fuel, but the difference is not beating ATR economics. I had some data on this a while back, I will try to dig it up again and post it here.
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:02 pm

Quoting rdh3e (Reply 13):
I believe that airlines are suffering now for a lack of foresight years ago.

I agree 150%. I also wonder why Bombardier never considered a 50 seat version of the Q400 to replace the Q300's. There are many airlines out there having a tough time because of this. LI is an example of this. LI has a fleet of 15's 300's which are getting up there in age and the astronomical cost of switching to ATR 42-600's is making fleet renewal a tough decision. Bombardier will loose many customers because of this.
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:20 pm

Quoting LimaFoxTango (Reply 18):
I also wonder why Bombardier never considered a 50 seat version of the Q400 to replace the Q300's.


The principal update going from the 300 to the 400 (aside from size) was in power (speed). Using Q400 updates on a 300 would result in a 300 that while faster, was also more expensive to acquire and more expensive to operate. Most independent airlines looking for smaller t-props seem to have a lot of trouble affording new build airframes. The cost per seat to acquire newer generation TPs probably has almost as much to do with the death of the market segment as the RJ boom did.
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:25 pm

Quoting LimaFoxTango (Reply 18):
which are getting up there in age

Which begs the question: I wonder how long the 19 to 50 seat products - regardless of manufacturer - can still go lumbering along (proper maintainence aside)? Nothing new down the pipe, even if it is considered more of a niche market now. I am also not looking at economics, or scope clauses, but simply one for one replacement.
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:35 pm

Quoting LimaFoxTango (Reply 18):
I also wonder why Bombardier never considered a 50 seat version of the Q400 to replace the Q300's.

Because there is no demand for 50 seat turboprops. ATR has only 3 ATR42 in his backlog and continues to offer it because it is assembled on the same assembly line of the ATR72. In addition, operating costs of the ATR72 is not much higher than the ATR42 (same for Q400 vs Q300)
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:37 pm

Quoting doug_Or (Reply 19):
Quoting LimaFoxTango (Reply 18):
I also wonder why Bombardier never considered a 50 seat version of the Q400 to replace the Q300's.


The principal update going from the 300 to the 400 (aside from size) was in power (speed). Using Q400 updates on a 300 would result in a 300 that while faster, was also more expensive to acquire and more expensive to operate. Most independent airlines looking for smaller t-props seem to have a lot of trouble affording new build airframes. The cost per seat to acquire newer generation TPs probably has almost as much to do with the death of the market segment as the RJ boom did.

Orders for the Q300 had also disappeared. And almost all recent ATR sales have been for the -72. As of June 20 (latest info I can find on the ATR website), there was only an order backlog of 10 -42s compared to 196 -72s. Excerpt below:

2011 STATUS
(as of June 20th, 2011)
Aircraft type Orders Deliveries
ATR 42 ..........426...... 416
ATR 72.......... 709.......513
TOTAL......... 1135...... 929
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Sat Sep 24, 2011 12:17 am

The 500 mile point is often bandied about as the flight length were the advantage shifts from the Q400 to the jets. Does anyone have any real world data indicating where that point actually is? It just seems to me that the crossover point should at least be a couple of hundred miles longer...but I'm just guessing.

Some real data would be nice.
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enilria
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Sat Sep 24, 2011 2:16 am

Quoting ozark1986 (Thread starter):

I need some help. I know that comparing CRJ700 with DASH8 Q400 is like apples and oranges, but can someone help me understand the differences in average flight cycle operating costs between these 2 commuter planes? Is the Q400 that much cheaper on a percentage basis compared to the CRJ700. Are there any advantages to the CRJ700? I know this is quite an open ended thread, but....

The DH4 is about 30% cheaper to operate per block hour per seat, but you need to allow for the speed difference. I would disagree with the line crossing at 500 miles. I would say it is more like 750 miles, but the revenue is the other issue. Revenue may be affected if you fly a significantly slower plane than the competition. I would say that taking both revenue and cost into account, the Q400 is the better plane to 600 miles.

BTW, the price of oil significantly alters the crossover point. My numbers are based on $90 oil. As fuel goes higher, the advantage of the Q400 increases and the inverse below $90.

[Edited 2011-09-23 19:17:57]
 
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Sat Sep 24, 2011 2:41 am

Quoting MasseyBrown (Reply 9):

This is an indefensible, non-economic reason for objecting to an aircraft, but ... the ATR42 cannot satisfy my need for speed. I get seriously impatient on them. It's like a noisy balloon ride. On a typical short-haul I'd rather drive than fly one of those things

That's actually not indefensible when you think about it. As a customer, you are making a choice to drive or otherwise get to a hub over taking the 42. When I worked at a regional, we used to here that our biggest competition wasn't other airlines, but buses and highways...
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Mon Sep 26, 2011 3:20 am

The other thing is... The Q300 is just a Dash 8-300 with a Q added. It wasnt really improved in any serious way. I also wonder with the other posters if a refreshed Q300 could be competitive.

The ATR, on the other hand, isn't really flying off the shelves either. It's a great product with many benefits, but has some challenges as have been pointed out.

I've actully posted a few times lately about this - Saabs and Brasilias are not gonna be able to lumber on till eternity. Many markets need turboprop service.

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LAXintl
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:50 am

Bombardier managed to get themselves in a catch-22 marketing wise. Similar to problem faced with Airbus a few years back over the A330/A340.

At the end of the day, BBD essentially have two aircraft with similar defined mission profiles and they are left in a bit of a bind as to which one to they push.
With the advents of the Q400 with its seat count and talked up performance, both it and the CR7 match the needs of some of the same clients and the company is often not sure which one they try to present to airlines as being the most beneficial. They have ended up in a place competing against themselves to a large degree.

Also for whatever reason due to its jet equivalent marketing mantra, BBD to this day does not aggressively match up the Q400 side by side against the ATR in presentation material, which in practical terms is models primary competitor, like it or not.
I have my own theory about his -- that BBD simply does not want to fighting a pricing game with ATR, since its aircraft is simply costlier to produce (high cost of the engines does not help), and BBD does not have the margins to play with.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 22):
2011 STATUS
(as of June 20th, 2011)
Aircraft type Orders Deliveries
ATR 42 ..........426...... 416
ATR 72.......... 709.......513
TOTAL......... 1135...... 929

You are probably missing some of the Paris Air Show orders (88+42 options), plus the recent orders from UNI Air(10), Trip (18+22),

Quoting gigneil (Reply 26):
The ATR, on the other hand, isn't really flying off the shelves either.

I don't know what yard stick you are using, however ATR in 2011 so far has broken its previous(2008) order record count, while production is also at a record levels and is expected to reach 70-frames annual rate by 2012, with further boost possible into 2013-2014.

Life for ATR looks significantly more promising at the moment then BBD and its programs.
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wingscrubber
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:17 pm

This thread got me curious, so I went hunting, found some interesting analysis on the topic, and there is probably more out there to be found since it is such a hotly debated business study:

http://web.mit.edu/aeroastro/people/waitz/publications/Babikian.pdf
http://www.uctc.net/papers/883.pdf

What I glean from a quick scan of these papers, is that turboprops are clearly the king of fuel efficiency up to a certain range and capacity, but when you factor in the value of the customers time and the potential profitability of operating a larger capacity jet where there is demand, the jet wins out. On lower density, shorter routes the jet loses its advantage due to the cost of fuel which makes the turboprop more attractive again, but ultimately one day if turboprop regionals become too slow and expensive then eventually driving or taking a greyhound bus becomes preferable, and beyond that, riding a bicycle. It all depends on how far you need to go, how fast you need to get there, and how many other people need to get there too.

[Edited 2011-09-26 10:35:49]

[Edited 2011-09-26 10:36:42]
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wingscrubber
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:31 pm

Here's some more.

http://www.transportenvironment.org/...AFQjCNHhLffHgPyItGLiGrvQ_FXbPZJlBQ
This one doesn't mention turboprops in great detail, but it's still interesting.

http://www.uctc.net/papers/881.pdf
http://www.planestats.com/Files/2010..._A_plane_with_no_future_SFS_v3.pdf
http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...growth-switches-on-and-off-362422/

Fascinating topic - really seems to vary depending on the importance of speed, the passenger density, fuel cost and route length.
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ozark1986
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RE: CRJ700 Vs Dash 8 Q400

Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:28 am

Everyone, thanks for your comments. Wingscrubber, fantastic collection of knowledge.

The issue is that everyone is talking economics and no one is talking about passenger comfort. I have always equated flying in the smaller regional jets to flying in an empty loo role. As a passenger I always believed that the larger turboprops offered more in absolute passenger space (head room, leg room, etc.).

Ozark

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