MohawkWeekend wrote:Boeing reminds me of the US auto industry in the early 70's. They (and the other large air frame manufacturers Lockheed Martin and Northrup Grumman) could build a 50 to 70 seat RJ. But their bloated cost structure makes it almost impossible to do so profitably.
The US either needs a disrupter - an upstart like Elon Musk and the other companies developing space launch vehicles who didn't exist 10 years ago. Of existing US companies, IMO only Cessna might be able to develop a competitive and profitable regional airliner .
Keep an eye out on Textron (Cessna, Beechcraft). They may end up buying out the ex-Bombardier regional jet business that Mitsubishi bought, but has made semi-dormant. If that were to happen, Textron would probably set up a new division and move the operations to Wichita.
Textron could re-engine the CRJ900 to make it more competitive in the 76-seat class. They could also come up with a clean sheet design for a smaller, lighter jet in the sub-65,000 pound MTOW/65-70 seat class, again with newer engines. The major North American airlines need regional lift, both to serve smaller markets and to raid each others' hubs.