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.”
One hundred and forty Spirit Airlines employees attended a ceremony at the Airbus US Manufacturing Facility in Mobile, Alabama, to celebrate the handover of the carrier’s first US-built A321.
The jet, N670NK (c/n 7106), was delivered on September 19 and is the tenth aircraft to have been handed over from the Mobile site.
Bob Lekites, Executive Vice President-Customers, Airbus Americas, lauded the success of the manufacturer’s relationship with Spirit. “It’s been a successful partnership, and this aircraft — the first to be produced for Spirit in Mobile and the USA — will hold a special place in our memories as we go forward. It’s truly a great milestone.”
Bob Fornaro, President and CEO of Spirit Airlines, added: “Our Fit Fleet is one of the youngest and most fuel-efficient in the industry and we’re thrilled to add our first American-made aircraft to the Spirit family. Spirit’s all-Airbus fleet helps us maintain an efficient, streamlined operation, enabling the company to save on costs and provide customers with ultra-low fares.”