New competitors in the single-aisle airliner market have driven Airbus to look beyond current technologies to identify the required characteristics for an A320-series replacement to enter service in 15 or more years.
AMAC Aerospace is stepping up its expansion plans and expects to open its second hangar at Basel’s EuroAirport this summer. The 90,500-sq-ft structure will be able to accommodate aircraft up to size of a Boeing 747, and the company already plans an extension to handle the Airbus 380.
Chile’s LAN Airlines has reached an agreement with Boeing to advance the start of delivery of ten 787-8 Dreamliners it has ordered by three years, from 2014 to the first half of 2011, the airline announced yesterday. Under the new schedule, LAN would become the first airline in the Western hemisphere to take delivery of the type.
In an deal valued at $500 million, Turkish Airlines has ordered V2500 SelectOne turbofans to power its A320-family aircraft for which is has placed 20 firm orders and taken options on 10 more. Engine maker International Aero Engines (IAE) is to make deliveries in the 2011-2013 time frame. The firm order covers powerplants for a mix of six A319s and 14 A321s. IAE is a joint venture between Rolls-Royce and Pratt & Whitney.
Middle East Airlines (MEA) has placed a contract for International Aero Engines to support the V2500 engines that power its Airbus A320 fleet. The long-term deal covers turbofans on six aircraft covered by firm orders and three more that the Beirut-based carrier has optioned. The operator took delivery of the first of these V2500 SelectOne-powered aircraft in January 2009.
Air New Zealand has ordered 14 Airbus A320s to replace its existing domestic fleet of 15 Boeing 737-300s. Valued at slightly more than $1 billion at list prices, the contract calls for deliveries to start in January 2011 and continue until 2016 to coincide with the expiration of 737-300 leases. ANZ has chosen IAE V2500 engines to power the A320s.
Airbus has delivered the first of two A318 aircraft equipped with “steep approach” capability to British Airways, the manufacturer announced today. The A318 is the largest commercial aircraft certified to land at London City Airport (LCY), from where BA plans to launch transatlantic service to New York JFK Airport on September 29. This will be the first scheduled airline route from LCY to a destination outside of Europe.
Cooling down somewhat from a red-hot commercial start at this year’s Paris Air Show, Airbus yesterday won a pair of modest but significant firm orders–one from Filipino airline Zest Airways for its first new Airbus A320 and the other from French private airline Aigle Azur for a single A319.
Qatar Airways signed a firm contract yesterday for 24 Airbus A320-family aircraft in a deal that included the conversion of an option the operator placed during last year’s Farnborough air show for four A321s. Qatar expects to take delivery of the first of those airplanes this coming November, while yesterday’s new order for 20 A320s gets filled through the end of 2012.
Airbus (Booth No. 4776) announced here at the NBAA show that it has received 23 orders so far in 2008, including 14 for single-aisle models (five A318s and nine ACJs) and nine for widebodies (eight A350s and one A340). Many of these orders came from undisclosed customers, but Airbus did reveal the names of several buyers, including Jet Alliance (one ACJ and two A318 Elites) and Saudi Arabia-based MAZ Aviation (six A350s).