China's first ever home grown jetliner is almost ready to start flying commercially after Chengdu Airlines took delivery of the first of 30 new ARJ21 jets.
Dubbed the 'Flying Phoenix,' the ARJ21 will continue trials for the next three months before commercial service, the plane's maker, state-owned Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC) said.
The ARJ21 regional jet has a range of about 2200km and can accommodate up to 90 passengers.
Although a landmark has been achieved after nearly a decade of delays, it is unlikely to put a dent in the order books of giants Boeing and Airbus for some time yet.
Chengdu Airlines said it will fly its first five ARJ21s on seven domestic routes from Chengdu to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Xi'an, Nanjing and Guiyang.
COMAC, which has a 48% stake in Chengdu Airlines, said it has received orders for 278 ARJ21 jets so far.