June 21, 2024

Russia: A prototype of the new Ilyushin Il-96 will fly soon

Russia now wants to mass-produce the new version of the Ilyushin Il-96-400 in small quantities. A prototype for the first flight is currently being prepared.

Air Bridge Cargo is currently making a comeback with the Ilyushin Il-96-400. Western sanctions are forcing the Russian cargo airline to do so. However, we are talking about the old generation, Il-96-400T.

Meanwhile, progress has also been made on the new 9.35-meter version. The State Aircraft Building Consortium UAC reports that a prototype Il-96-400M is currently being prepared for the first flight in Voronezh. The model has already had its ups and downs: firstly, Russia planned its serial production. But in November 2020, the plan stalled. The examples of modern four-engine aircraft that were actually produced were the only ones of their kind as the Doomsday aircraft.

Two to three Il-96-400M per year

But Western sanctions in the wake of Russia’s attack on Ukraine changed things again. Now the country needs aircraft of its own production again. In addition to the Superjet 100, Irkut MS-21 and updated Tupolev Tu-214, from 2 to 3 Il-96-400M will be built each year.

The updated Il-96 will differ from its predecessor with a modernized cockpit and communication systems. With the fuselage, wings and engines, the old components are taken over. UAC limits the range to 10,000 km. In a two-class configuration, 386 guests will be accommodated on the plane.

Less successful predecessor

The previous model completed its maiden voyage in 1998 and was not a sales success. Only 30 examples were built.

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In the photo gallery above you can see the prototype Il-96. Clicking on the image opens the gallery in a large format.