Seattle, Washington - On Nov. 22, Boeing unveiled the largest variant of its troubled 737 MAX series jets, notwithstanding a worldwide flight ban imposed on the aircraft by civil aviation authorities.
Boeing displayed the 737 MAX 10, the newest member of the 737 MAX Family at its Renton factory near Seattle. The aircraft is expected to make its maiden flight next year if ground testing goes as planned.
Boeing's 737 MAX jets have been globally grounded since March 13 after the second fatal crash of the type in Ethiopia on March 10. This is the worst crisis in Boeing’s more than 100-year company history.
The manufacturer is now waiting for the regulatory approval for its updates anti-stall system known as MCAS to resume the aircraft deliveries to its customers.
On Nov. 11, the American aircraft manufacturer said that it was expecting global regulators to allow the aircraft to return to service in by the end of the year.
Last week the FAA said there was no specific timeline for the regulatory approval. Some regulators to follow the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, but EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) and Transport Canada said that they would conduct their own reviews.
Boing fixed the aircraft's anti-stall system known as MCAS (Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System). Investigations by experts linked the system to both crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia, which killed 346 people.
Also read: How the Boeing MCAS System Really Works
Boeing's current backlog stands for 4,400 737 MAX jets, of which are 550 737 MAX 10s. The 737 MAX 10 can accommodate up to 204 passengers in a two-class configuration, 26 more than that of the 737 MAX 8.
During the Dubai Air Show last week, Boeing received a vote of confidence in its 737 MAX family jets with new orders from the global customers.
Turkish-German joint venture SunExpress signed a firm order for ten more 737 MAX 8. It is the first firm order after the worldwide grounding of the aircraft.
SunExpress deal was followed by an order commitment for 30 737 MAX 8 from Kazakh operator Air Astana for its low-cost subsidiary FlyArystan.
Another firm order for 20 737 MAX jets (10 737 MAX and 10 737 MAX 10) was also inked by an anonymous customer during the event.