During the MAKS air show held in Moscow between 27 August and 01 September 19, Russia displayed their newest challenger to the short to medium haul single aisle aircraft like the Airbus A320 and the Boeing 737. The aircraft is called the Irkut MC 21-300. The MC21 is capable of flying 163 to 211 passengers.

The aircraft was displayed at MAKS after more than two years of testing. The MC 21 has been designed by the Yakolev design bureau and manufactured by its parent organisation Irkut which is a part of the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC). The first aircraft was rolled out in June 2016 while it flew for the first time in May 2017. The MC 21 has carbon fiber reinforced polymer wings and is powered by two engines. The engine options available are Pratt and Whitney PW1000G which generate a thrust between 24000 to 35000 lbf. The other option is the Aviadvigatel PD 14 engine which generates a thrust between 28000 to 31000 lbf.

The MC 21-300 is flown by a crew of two, and can seat 163 passengers in a two-class configuration. In single class configuration it can seat 211 passengers. The aircraft is 42.20 m long, has a wing span of 35.90 m, height is 11.50 m and the fuselage width is 4.06 m. The cabin is 3. 81 m wide as compared to 3.70 m width of A320 cabin. It has a range of 6000 km.

Though technically the aircraft looks attractive and competent, its succes would depend on its acceptance within Russian airlines. Incidentally Aeroflot has already placed an order for acquiring 50 MC 21 aircraft. A total of 175 firm orders have been received by Irkut for the MC 21. Most of these are expected to be from Russia, CIS countries, Asia-Pacific, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.