ATR landed a firm order yesterday for a pair of new ATR 72-500s from Vietnam Airlines, bringing to 16 the number of the 68-seat turboprops the Asian customer has ordered since 2001. During yesterday’s signing ceremony, the airline also accepted delivery of its fourth ATR 72-500 and the first in its new livery.
Vietnam Airlines plans to take delivery of 12 more aircraft over the next two years as it gradually harmonizes a fleet that today includes seven vintage ATR 72-200s. The fleet of 16 modern turboprops will allow the airline to replace its aging turboprops and expand its regional operations in areas not efficiently served by jets.
Asian carriers account for more than half of ATR’s total orders over the past four years. Vietnam Airlines has operated ATRs since 1992, helping the country and surrounding region develop a tourism base and business markets.