A few years after Fokker went bankrupt in 1996, the 70 to 100 seat passenger airplane market got unsaturated. It eventually led to a tremendous opportunity for manufacturers like Embraer to develop themselves into this market. The designed a series of aircraft which could accomodate between 70 and 110 passengers, designated the E-Jet series. It comprizes the Embraer 170, 175, 190 and 195. All these aircraft feature a wider cabin than competing models like the CRJ-700/900. This means that the cabin is fitted with four abreast seating instead of three and carry payload beneath the passenger compartment.
The cockpit of the E-Jet is fully fly-by-wire. This means that pilot workload is reduced along with optimized aircraft performance due to this proven technology.
As stated above, the first aircraft in the E-Jet serie was the Embraer 170 and first appeared in 2002. Three years earlier, Crossair (Swiss Airlines nowadays), ordered 60 aircraft with an option for another 100. This number was rapidly reduced after Swissair got into financial trouble and eventually went bankrupt. Large carriers already operating the aircraft are US Airways and jetBlue with the latter operating the largest version of this aircraft. At the moment over a 100 E-Jets have been delivered to operators worldwide.
The Embraer 170 accomodates up to 72 passengers in a typical two class configuration. It has a range of approximately 2000nm and is powered by stage III (stage IV compliant) high by-pass turbofan engines manufactured by General Electric.
A LOT Embraer 170 on finals for runway 18R at EHAM