Brazilian jet-builder Embraer S.A. unveiled the E195-E2 twin-engine jet for the first time this week, and followed up by naming Azul Brazilian Airlines as the launch customer for the extended-model regional aircraft. The E195-E2 is the last and largest of the E-Jets E2 series of medium-range aircraft, the first of which will be delivered next year.

In 2013, Embraer announced a $1.7-billion program to remodel its E-Jets regional aircraft, to offer 16-24% lower fuel-burn rates and 15-25% lower maintenance costs. The three variants -- E175-E2, E190-E2, and E195-E2 – have a common fuselage design but different lengths, and each has a different wing design. The jets are powered by Pratt & Whitney PW1000G geared-turbofan engines.

To date, Embraer has firm orders from airlines and leasing companies for 275 E-Jets E2 aircraft, with “letters of intent,” options, and purchase rights totaling 415 more aircraft.

The E195-E2 has three extra rows of seats compared to the current-generation E195, and it can be configured to seat up to 120 passengers in two classes, or up to 146 in a single class.

“The E195-E2 has the potential to significantly change the fleet profile of airlines around the world,” according to John Slattery, president and CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation. “With a 20% lower cost per trip and a cost per seat similar to larger aircraft, the E195-E2 becomes the ideal aircraft for regional business growth, as well as low-cost business plans and complementing existing mainline fleets.”

Azul Brazilian Airlines is the largest operator of the current-generation E195 jets, and has contracted Embraer to supply up to 50 aircraft (30 firm orders, 20 purchase options.) Presently, it has 73 E-Jets in service. The first of it E195-E2s will enter service in the first half of 2019.

“Azul played a key role in the E195-E2 development, actively participating in the design specification of the aircraft and helping Embraer design the most efficient single-aisle aircraft in the market today,” Slattery commented.