Malaysian discount-fare airline AirAsia finally chose an engine type for the 60 Airbus A320s it ordered in two batches last December and in March. CFM International will supply its CFM56-5B as specified under a firm order signed here yesterday for 120 engines and nine spares valued at some $750 million at list price.
On hand here for the ceremonies, Malaysian deputy prime minister YAB Dato’ Sri Haji Mohd Najib bin Tun Jaji Abdul Razak and transport minister YB Dato’ Sri Chan Kong Choy witnessed the contract signing by CFMI president and CEO Pierre Fabre and AirAsia group CEO Tony Fernandes.
Airbus expects to start delivering the A320s from late this year through 2010. AirAsia Group, comprised of AirAsia in Malaysia, Thai AirAsia in Thailand and AWAIR in Indonesia, plans to replace all 26 of its Boeing 737-300s with the single-aisle Airbuses. The contract, which also includes “purchase rights” for another 40 airplanes, will make AirAsia the largest A320 operator in the Asia-Pacific region.