Kazakh flag carrier Air Astana has taken delivery of its first Airbus A320neo at a special ceremony at the manufacturer’s Toulouse facility.
The jet, registered P4-KBH (c/n 7124) and leased from Air Lease Corporation, is the first of 11 A320neo Family aircraft the airline ordered at the Farnborough Airshow in 2015. It is configured in a two-class layout, with 16 Business Class seats and 132 in Economy. Air Astana already operates a fleet of 13 A320ceo Family aircraft, with the neo joining them on the carrier’s domestic and international network.
“The A320 Family has proven to be a success in service with Air Astana over the past ten years, for its passenger appeal, low operating costs and reliability” said Peter Foster, President and CEO, of Air Astana. “The A320neo Family offers significant improvements to passenger comfort, fuel efficiency and operating capability, particularly on longer range routes to Asia and Europe.”
John Leahy Airbus Chief Operating Officer, Customers, added: “We congratulate Air Astana on their first A320neo delivery. Becoming the first operator of the world’s most advanced single-aisle aircraft in the CIS. The airline will not only benefit from the commonality with their existing A320 Family fleet but also from its unprecedented passenger comfort and fuel efficiency.”
Spirit Airlines became the first US carrier to operate the Airbus A320neo when it took delivery of N901NK (c/n 6833) on October 7. Spirit has 55 A320neo Family aircraft on order, five leased from AerCap and 50 ordered directly from the manufacturer. All of the airline’s neos will be powered by Pratt & Whitney Pure Power PW1100-JM engines.
Twelve days later Denver-based Frontier Airlines received its first Airbus A320neo, N301FR (c/n 7141). The jet, powered by CFM International LEAP-1A engines, is the first of 80 examples due to join the carrier. “We’re excited to receive our first A320neo,” said Barry Biffle, President and CEO – Frontier Airlines. “The efficiency of the A320neo will help us lower costs even more and pass those savings along to our customers.”
Mexican low-cost carrier Viva Aerobus joined the Airbus A320neo club on October 5, when it took delivery of its first example, XA-VIV (c/n 7060).
Viva Aerobus placed an order for 52 A320 Family aircraft in 2013, including 40 A320neos. The airline’s neos are powered by Pratt & Whitney Pure Power PW1100-JM engines and configured with the Space-Flex cabin accommodating up to 186 passengers.
“The arrival of the A320neo is a historic milestone in the transformation of the new Viva Aerobus,” said Juan Carlos Zuazua, CEO of Viva Aerobus. “With this first A320neo we are one step closer to reaching our year-end goal of becoming an all-Airbus operator and offering our passengers the youngest aircraft fleet in all of Latin America.”
Viva Aerobus currently operates 19 A320ceos and two Boeing 737-300s.
Rafael Alonso, President of Airbus Latin America and the Caribbean, said: “Airbus is proud to support Viva Aerobus evolve into one of the fastest-growing and most dynamic airlines in Mexico. Mexico’s strong economic growth presents a unique opportunity for airlines such as Viva Aerobus to expand their fleets with the industry’s top performing A320neo to improve their efficiency and environmental footprint.”
Low-cost carrier Air Arabia has finalised long term agreement with Air Lease Corporation (ALC) for six Airbus A321neos. The new jets come from ALC’s existing order book and are scheduled for delivery to the Sharjah-based airline between January and October 2019.
“We are delighted to have signed these six new A321neo aircraft leases with our good friends at Air Arabia. These new jets will complement the core A320 family fleet that Air Arabia operates,” said Steven F Udvar-Házy, Executive Chairman of Air Lease Corporation. “Air Arabia will now be able to expand into new destinations as well as increase capacity on their highest density routes with the most modern aircraft in this category.”
Air Arabia currently operates 37 Airbus A320ceos. It also has subsidiaries in Egypt (one A320), Jordan (two A320s) and Morocco (five A320s).
Mexican carrier Volaris has received its maiden Airbus A320neo, making it the first North American airline to operate the latest generation jet.
The aircraft, N528VL (c/n 7051), is one of ten A320neos Volaris is leasing via AerCap, along with six A321neos. The airline has 30 neos on order in total.
“The arrival of the A320neo symbolizes an important step in our ambitious ultra low-cost strategy,” said Enrique Beltranena, CEO of Volaris. “We are delighted to be the first to bring this new technology to passengers in North America.”
Rafael Alonso, President of Airbus Latin America and the Caribbean, added: “Mexico’s strong economic growth presents a key opportunity for the country’s top airlines such as Volaris to expand and remain environmentally efficient, and the A320neo will be exceptional in achieving this for Volaris.”
AerCap President and Chief Commercial Officer Philip Scruggs congratulated the airline on the arrival of its new jet. “We are delighted to deliver our first A320neo aircraft on lease to longstanding customer, Volaris and particularly pleased to be the first to deliver the aircraft type to a carrier in North America,” he said. “The A320neo aircraft is one of the most in-demand single aisle aircraft in the world, incorporating the latest technologies and the most fuel efficient engines. We look forward to continuing our successful relationship with our friends and partners at Volaris as the airline continues to expand its presence on the continent.”
Volaris’ A320neos are powered by Pratt & Whitney Pure Power PW1100-JM engines and are configured to seat up to 186 passengers with 18in-wide seats.
Malaysian low-cost carrier AirAsia has taken delivery of its maiden A320neo. Appropriately registered 9M-NEO (c/n 7236), the CFM International LEAP-1A-powered jet was handed over during a ceremony in Hamburg on September 7. It is the first of 404 A320neo Family aircraft the carrier has on order and is equipped with the manufacturer’s Space Flex Cabin, capable of accommodating 186 passengers.
It is the 17th A320neo Airbus has delivered to date.
Airbus has handed over LATAM Airlines Group’s first A320neo. The carrier is the first in the Americas to operate the latest generation jet, which is powered by Pratt & Whitney Pure Power PW1100-JM engines.
Executives from LATAM and Airbus attended a delivery ceremony at the manufacturer’s Toulouse, France, facility where the carrier also took delivery of its fourth A350 XWB. Both jets are painted in LATAM’s new livery.
“We are pleased to offer our passengers the opportunity to fly the first A320neo in the Americas,” said Enrique Cueto, CEO of LATAM Airlines Group. “The A320 aircraft family has long served an important role in our fleet, supporting the operation of our unrivalled domestic and regional network in Latin America. With the latest in technology, efficiency and passenger comfort, the A320neo is a welcome addition and will help us to continue to offer one of the most modern and efficient fleets in the industry.”
Airbus President and CEO, Fabrice Brégier commented: “Over the years, Airbus and LATAM have grown together to become partners in building today’s dynamic aviation market in Latin America, which is why we are especially proud that the first A320neo in the Americas will be flying in LATAM’s livery. We are certain that this aircraft will complement their existing fleet and further their success in the region.”
The South American carrier will debut the 174-seat neo on domestic services before expanding to regional routes in November. The airline has 67 A320neo Family aircraft on order.
Las Vegas-based budget carrier Allegiant Travel Company has signed a firm purchase contract for 12 Airbus A320ceos. The deal is the first time Allegiant has purchased new aircraft direct from a manufacturer.
“Allegiant offers travellers convenient, affordable nonstop service enabling them to more easily enjoy their favourite vacation destinations,” said Maury Gallagher, Chairman and CEO of Allegiant Travel Company. “As we continue to transition to an all-Airbus fleet, this purchase will allow us to accelerate that process, reduce complexity in our fleet and provide our passengers with an ever-improving experience.”
The new jets, which will be powered by CFM International’s CFM56 engines, will join Allegiant’s current fleet of 15 A319ceos and 16 A320ceos.
“We love it when we hear the Allegiant team say that ‘Airbus is our future’, because that demonstrates they are hitting their bottom-line goals while also satisfying their passengers, and they know it’s because of the Airbus A320 Family,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer – Customers. “The A320 offers wider and more comfortable 18” seats, wider aisles for faster boarding and more on-board storage space for today’s larger carry-ons. Low-cost carriers come back to the A320 Family again and again because it offers optimum performance from all perspectives. When an airline grows its A320 fleet, it’s making a sound investment in its financial future.”
AirAsia has signed a firm order with Airbus for 100 A321neos. The deal, valued at $12.6bn, was confirmed at the Farnborough International Airshow on July 12 and increases the Malaysian low-cost carrier’s total commitments to 575 A320 Family aircraft.
Commenting on the order, AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said: “We currently operate close to 1,000 flights per day to more than 120 destinations in 24 countries. We recorded a robust load factor of 85% in the first quarter of 2016, up 8% from the same period last year, and we are confident of maintaining this momentum going forward. The A321neo will help us to meet ongoing strong demand as well as further reduce our cost per Available Seat Kilometre across the group, which will translate to lower air fares for our guests. We would like to congratulate Airbus for producing the state-of-the-art A321neo aircraft that meets our requirements for efficient operations.”
Fernandes added: “The A321neo will be operated on our most popular routes and especially at airports with infrastructure constraints. It will allow us to bring higher passenger volumes with the same slots, therefore providing immediate benefits to the airports. These include, among others, more efficient operations, higher revenues from passenger service charges, and more airport retail purchases. We will also continue to maintain our 25-minute turnaround with two- or three-step boarding where permitted to ensure on-time performance.”