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In my opinion, Bombardier, does need a new jet to compete effectively for leadership in the larger Regional Jet category. A new jet design might go a long way toward competing head-to-head with its number one competitor: Embraer.

However, leadership in a specific market is not everything. Loss of it doesn't necessarily mean the company can't continue to prosper to where it will at some point, have a new product to offer in this area.

Bombardier has been a leader in terms of coming up with new, and innovative aircraft designs. Over the past decade BBD has averaged more than one new aircaft per year. But BBD management doesn't go for "me-too" products. Usuallly they need significant advantages over current offerings before investing in development of a new aircraft design.

It has been said that development of a new 100+ seater would take the company more than 5 years to bring to market. However, the recent experience of Embraer, has proven that with a little extra effort this estimate can be reduced significantly.

This article from the Financial Post makes some interesting points on the recently split Air Canada deal for new jets:

http://www.canada.com/search/story.aspx?id=fe7c5ccb-8118-4857-a930-dc301cb09fb7
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