Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation (MAJ, Nagoya Chubu) is planning to rebrand its Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) as the Space Jet in an effort to refresh the program's image ahead of its tentative commercial debut in mid-2020.

According to sources who spoke to The Japan Times on condition of anonymity, the change is aimed at expunging an image which has suffered from the MRJ's repeated false starts and EIS delays.

The 90-seater MRJ-90, the first of the family of jets, is currently undergoing type certification in the United States. The sources said that given strong demand for 70-seater jets in North America, Mitsubishi Aircraft will also launch development of the MRJ-70.

As it stands, the MRJ-90's launch operator is still ANA - All Nippon Airways (NH, Tokyo Haneda) with orders for 15 of the type which will be placed with its ANA Wings (EH, Sapporo Chitose) subsidiary.