Category: Airbus

Airbus announces major performance improvement to its latest single-aisle aircraft – the A220 Family

Provided by Airbus

A220 aircraft range increased by up to 450nm, opening new route possibilities for airlines around the world

Mirabel, Québec, Canada, 21 May 2019 – Airbus today announced that the A220 Family aircraft, the newest addition to its single-aisle portfolio, will now be offering increased range starting from H2 2020.

The A220 aircraft maximum take-off weight (MTOW*) is now confirmed to increase by 2,268 kg (2.3 metric tonnes). The new MTOW will increase the respective maximum range capabilities to 3,350nm for the A220-300 and 3,400nm for the A220-100, some 450nm more than currently advertised.

“In true Airbus tradition we improve our products constantly,” said Christian Scherer, Chief Commercial Officer, Airbus. “This new MTOW will allow operators to reach markets which today cannot be served by other small single-aisle aircraft types.”

“Since its entry-into-service close to three years ago, the A220 aircraft has already proven that it is meeting or beating its initial performance targets, bringing more flexibility and revenue potential to customers,” said Rob Dewar, Head of Engineering & Customer Support for the A220. “Today, Airbus is reinforcing its confidence in the A220 platform and further enhancing its capabilities to meet upcoming market requirements.”   

This performance increase is achieved by taking credit of existing structural and systems margins as well as existing fuel volume capacity. This will allow airlines to tap into new routes that were not possible before, connecting key cities in Western Europe with the Middle East or from Southeast Asia to Australia.

The A220 has been purpose built for efficiency. It brings together state-of-the-art aerodynamics, advanced materials and Pratt & Whitney’s latest-generation PW1500G geared turbofan engines to offer at least 20% lower fuel burn per seat compared to previous generation aircraft.

With an order book of over 530 aircraft to date, the A220 has all the credentials to win the lion’s share of the 100- to 150-seat aircraft market, estimated to represent 7,000 aircraft over the next 20 years.

Air Transat begins the renewal of its fleet

Provided by Transat A.T. Inc.

Montreal, May 3, 2019 – Today, Air Transat, named the 2018 World’s Best Leisure Airline, is taking delivery of the first of 15 Airbus A321neoLRs that will be added to its fleet by 2022.

“The arrival of this new generation of aircraft is an important moment for our company and our passengers in many respects,” says Annick Guérard, Chief Operating Officer at Transat. “The Airbus A321neoLR represents what Air Transat stands for today and what we strive for in the coming years. It reinforces our position as a leader in sustainable tourism, while also offering our passengers a superior on-board experience. In addition, the aircraft’s long range will optimize our operations in our core markets, namely in our destinations in Europe, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.”

Greenest in its class

The Airbus A321neoLR is in perfect sync with Air Transat’s continued efforts in sustainable tourism. It is powered by Pratt & Whitney engines with the lowest fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions (CO2 and NOX) in their class. Compared to previous generation Airbus aircraft, the Airbus A321neoLR consumes over 15% less fuel, generates 50% less noise in the cabin and communities, produces about 5,000 fewer tonnes of CO2 a year and lowers NOX emissions—which contribute to smog and acid rain— by 50%.

Renewed on-board experience

Passengers will step into an entirely redesigned cabin, where comfort is crucial. “A key element behind all of our decisions is that we want travellers to feel like they’re on vacation from the moment they set foot on board,” explains Guérard.

Air Transat and Airbus went over every detail of the cabin interior to ensure the best inflight experience possible. “We are proud to deliver the A321LR to Air Transat and to be associated with such a fine, innovative airline,” says Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer.

Club Class, with its exclusive cabin and personalized service, was given a new look. Its 12 deep-blue natural leather seats, with their wider individual touch screens, are even more ergonomic and have a leg rest for maximum comfort.

In Economy Class, the 187 light-blue natural leather seats are wider than those of previous generations of Airbus, providing passengers with more personal space. They’re equipped with a state-of-the-art entertainment system, with larger individual touch screens and USB ports to charge electronic devices.

Air Transat’s second Airbus A321neoLR is set to land in June, with four more arriving in fall 2019. New planes will be gradually added, leading to an all-Airbus fleet by 2022. Air Transat has signed a deal with AerCap for the long-term lease of 15 Airbus A321neoLRs.

JetBlue Airways readies for new Airbus A220 entry-into-service with training partner CAE

Provided by CAE Inc

Montreal, Canada, April 30, 2019

CAE announced at the World Aviation Training Symposium the sale of two Airbus A220-300 CAE 7000XR Series full-flight simulators (FFSs) and two CAE 500XR flight training devices (FTDs) to JetBlue Airways, which is preparing the entry-into-service of its new aircraft.

“We are pleased to extend our long-standing partnership with CAE,” said Steve Forte, Vice President JetBlue University. “These state-of-the-art training devices will help us develop industry leading training programs to ensure a smooth launch of the A220.”

“The Airbus A220 is a key component of JetBlue’s growth strategy and we are thrilled to be part of this airline’s journey,” said Nick Leontidis, CAE’s Group President Civil Aviation Training Solutions. “We have been partners with JetBlue for over 15 years, and the purchase of these new FFSs and FTDs is yet another testament to the value CAE brings to its airline partners.”

The two CAE 7000XR Series FFSs will be equipped with the innovative CAE Tropos™ 6000XR visual system. The first FFS and FTD will be delivered in the first half of 2020 at JetBlue University, located in Orlando, Florida.

With this addition, CAE has sold a total of eight A220 full-flight simulators to operators worldwide.

CAE and JetBlue Airways share a training relationship with the Gateway Select pilot provisioning program. To date, more than 60 aspiring pilots have started training in the Gateway Select Program. CAE also holds an exclusive training centre operations services agreement to support the airline’s growth at JetBlue’s University in Orlando.

Air Baltic to start in-house A220 C-checks in 2019

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11 March 2019 BY: Michale Gubisch, London

Air Baltic has decided to establish in-house base maintenance capabilities as it moves to an all-Airbus A220 fleet.

The Latvian airline plans to recruit some 50 technicians to start C-checks on the twinjets later this year, it says.

At its Riga base, Air Baltic already conducts A-checks on its fleet, which also includes Boeing 737-300/500s and Bombardier Q400 turboprops.

However, the 737s will be retired later this year and the Q400s by early 2023.

Cirium’s Fleets Analyzer shows that Air Baltic has 14 A220-300s in service, another 36 on order, and further commitments for up to 30 more.

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Air Baltic

The airline tells FlightGlobal that it intends to build additional maintenance facilities in Riga as the fleet expands, but has not detailed the plan.

Both licensed aircraft engineers and unlicensed technicians are being recruited by Air Baltic, and it plans to establish a technical apprenticeship scheme.

Online job ads indicate that the airline is planning to recruit further technicians in 2020.

Application deadlines for various technical positions have been set for March, April and December 2019.

Air Vanuatu orders four A220s

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26 February 2019 – Flight Global – By Ellis Taylor, Perth

Air Vanuatu has ordered two Airbus A220-100s and two A220-300s, making it the launch customer for the A220 in the South Pacific.

The order, announced at the start of the Avalon air show in Australia, is the first Airbus purchase by Air Vanuatu, and will form a major part of its future growth plans.

The first delivery from the order is due in June 2020.

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“We are proud to be the launch airline in the South Pacific of the best-in-class Airbus A220,” says chief executive Derek Nice.

“These aircraft will be deployed to operate on our current domestic and international routes, including our newly announced non-stop Melbourne-Vanuatu service, and will bolster plans to expand our network in the South Pacific.”

Pratt & Whitney PW1500G engines power all A220s, and at list prices the four aircraft are valued at $345 million.

Cirium’s Fleets Analyzer shows that the carrier operates one Boeing 737-800, an ATR 72, three Viking Air DHC-6-300 Twin Otters and two Britten-Norman Islanders.

airBaltic to phase out Boeing 737 ahead of schedule

Provided by

airBaltic to phase out Boeing 737 ahead of schedule

20 February – Breaking Travel News

airBaltic will end its Boeing 737 fleet operations in the autumn, one year ahead of plan.

The airline aims to minimise complexity and benefit from the additional efficiency of the Airbus A220-300 aircraft which will become the only jet type operated by the Latvian airline.

Martin Gauss, chief executive of airBaltic, said: “Airbus A220-300 is the aircraft of our future and, by phasing out the Boeing 737, we will have the youngest jet fleet in Europe.

“The introduction of Airbus A220-300 has been very successful and provided the additional efficiency any airline is seeking in the highly competitive aviation market.

“Thanks to the good overall performance we took a decision to introduce a single type fleet of up to 80 (50 firm order and 30 options) Airbus A220-300 aircraft by 2022.”

So far airBaltic has received 14 of its Airbus A220-300 orders and eight new aircraft will join this year.

In late 2018, airBaltic phased out three of its Boeing 737-500 aircraft.

Currently the airline still operates six Boeing 737-300 and two Boeing 737-500 jets.

airBaltic serves over 70 destinations from Riga, Tallinn and Vilnius, offering the largest variety of destinations and convenient connections via Riga to its network spanning Europe, Scandinavia, the CIS and the Middle East.

ATW announces 2019 Award Winners

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William Franke, Air New Zealand, airBaltic, Spirit Airlines, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, Airlink and the Airbus A220 airliner were announced Jan. 17 as among the top winners of the ATW 45th Annual Airline Industry Achievement Awards.

  • Aviation Technology Achievement, to the Airbus A220, a highly efficient and comfortable airliner that is now scoring high marks with airlines worldwide and is embarked on a new trajectory since becoming part of the Airbus portfolio. “I am extremely proud that the A220 has been recognized by ATW for Aviation Technology Achievement,” said Philippe Balducchi, CEO, A220 Partnership. This award is testament to the thousands of women and men in Quebec and worldwide who have put their brains, hearts and souls into designing, producing and now supporting this revolutionary aircraft. The A220 is reshaping the 100 to 150 seat segment of aircraft to the great satisfaction of our customers and their customers, operating day in day out on a fast-growing number of routes around the globe.”
  • Leadership Excellence, to William “Bill” Franke, the managing partner of Indigo Partners whose extraordinary career has reshaped modern air transport. Franke is a leading figure behind the development of ultra-low cost carriers worldwide. Airlines that he helped to create include Frontier, Wizz, Volaris and Tiger Airways.  Bill Franke commented, “I very much appreciate ATW’s recognition of our commitment to build a network of affordable carriers that make travel possible for many.”
  • Eco-Airline of the Year, to Air New Zealand, for which efficiency and sustainability are part of its DNA. Air New Zealand’s Project Green to reduce waste, its transition to a technologically advanced, renewably powered electric ground vehicle fleet, and its remarkable support for endangered species are among its many eco endeavors.
  • Passenger Experience Achievement, to Air New Zealand for its enhanced SkyCouch, which turns three economy seats into a couch after takeoff and is a rare example of a comfort option on long-haul travel to passengers in the main cabin. Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon said the airline was thrilled to receive two ATW Awards.  “Air New Zealand is at the forefront of leadership in sustainability in aviation and has carved out a reputation for innovation and excellence in customer experience.  These awards are terrific recognition of the hard work of our people over many years,” he said.
  • Value Airline of the Year, to Spirit Airlines, an ultra-low-cost carrier that has stayed true to its lowest-fares business model while significantly improving on-time and checked bag delivery performance, equipping its entire fleet with Wi-Fi, growing its network and delivering some of the industry’s best financial results. “On behalf of our entire team, I would like to thank Air Transport World for recognizing Spirit Airlines as this year’s Value Airline of the Year,” said Ted Christie, Spirit Airlines’ President and Chief Executive Officer.  “We are committed to providing the best value in the sky, and this award recognizes our mission to deliver an extraordinary Guest experience, while keeping our costs and fares competitive. From our reliable, on-time operation, to the installation of high-speed Wi-Fi on our entire fleet, Spirit continues to invest in the Guest experience and set the pace as an industry leader. This award is testament to the hard work of our entire Spirit Family across the U.S., Caribbean and Latin America, and a milestone in Spirit’s continued evolution to deliver More Go.”
  • Airline Market Leader, to airBaltic, a Latvian carrier that becomes the first airline to win this Award two years running. Building on its 2017 success, airBaltic has continued its fast growth and offers more than 70 connections from all three Baltic capitals, where it now commands a 56% market share. airBaltic saw record passenger numbers and revenue in 2018. Martin Gauss, Chief Executive Officer of airBaltic: “It is a remarkable achievement for us to be the first airline recognized as the ATW Airline Market Leader for the second consecutive year. We continue to build on our success, and, by providing larger capacities and increased efficiency, have further increased our market share in the Baltics.”
  • Airport of the Year, to Dallas Fort Worth International, which has managed growth while continuing to add enhancements that ease the passenger’s journey. DFW has transformed into a global mega-hub, investing in new facilities, infrastructure and technologies, but its hybrid use lease agreement model keeps down costs for its airline customers. “It’s truly an honor to be recognized as Air Transport World’s Global Airport of the Year, and it’s a credit to the nearly 2000 employees of DFW Airport, who continually go above and beyond to take care of customers, address the needs of stakeholders, and engage with our surrounding communities,” said Sean Donohue, CEO of DFW Airport. “DFW is experiencing the fastest growth in more than a decade, and we see it as an opportunity to welcome the world to the Dallas Fort Worth region and advance the innovation and collaboration that deliver for our customers and make our communities stronger.”
  • Joseph S. Murphy Award, to Airlink, a rapid-response humanitarian relief organization that links airlines with pre-qualified nonprofits. This special Award recognizes the enormous work this small nonprofit has achieved by linking the capabilities and capacity of more than 40 commercial and charter airlines and 80 international nonprofits to get desperately-needed emergency resources to people and places where disasters such as hurricanes, floods and epidemics threaten multiple lives. “We are extremely honored to represent the aviation industry as a force for good and to be recognized by Air Transport World with the Joseph S. Murphy Award,” said Steven J. Smith, President and CEO of Airlink. “Our efforts to deliver humanitarian aid and relief workers to communities impacted by crises around the world would not be possible without the generosity and involvement of the aviation industry and its leaders. Together, we are utilizing aviation’s unique reach and speed to save and improve lives.”

The final 2019 ATW Airline Industry Award for Airline of the Year will be announced in January.

The 45th ATW Awards, sponsored by CFM International and Pratt & Whitney, will be presented on March 26, 2019, at a gala dinner at the JW Marriott Essex House Hotel in New York.

For more information about the awards, attending the award ceremony and sponsorship opportunities, visit

Airbus starts work on A220 assembly line six months after taking control of C Series program

News provided by The Globe and Mail

Julien Arsenault, Montreal, The Canadian Press, 16 January 2019

Airbus SE broke ground Wednesday on the A220 aircraft assembly line at its facility in Mobile, Ala., the first step in a US$300-million construction project paid for by Bombardier Inc.

That amount makes up a chunk of the US$925 million the Quebec plane-and-train maker could shell out by the end of 2021 under a partnership that saw Airbus take control of the C Series – now known as the A220 – last July without paying a penny.

The event took place at the Airbus plant in Alabama, where assembly of the popular A320 passenger jet is already under way. The French airplane giant said the new project will create 400 factory jobs.

Production of the narrow-body A220 is expected to start in the third quarter, whether or not plant construction is complete, in order to make the first deliveries in 2020.

Airbus said the project will generate economic spinoffs for Quebec, forecasting that northern suppliers of the A220 will rake in about $400 million per month once the Mirabel, Que., and Mobile facilities are up and running at full capacity.

The two plants will churn out 10 aircraft and four aircraft a month, respectively, the company said.

“The cost of parts produced by all suppliers in Quebec, including Bombardier, is more than $2.6 million for each aircraft,” Airbus said.

The A220 has some 537 firm orders from 19 customers, including Delta Air Lines, JetBlue and Moxy, according to the company’s latest data states. That includes 135 orders placed by U.S. airlines since Airbus seized the reins six months ago, a takeover that was first announced in October 2017.

The project will also receive US$16 million in the form of incentives from the local, regional and state governments, Airbus said.

Airbus open to developing larger version of A220

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Airbus is “likely” to develop a larger derivative of its A220 in the coming years – but only after the company has ramped up production and the aircraft has secured a firm place in the global aviation market.

“It’s very likely that… once the A220 has done the ramp up, is economically viable [and] then we can further invest, that this is going to happen,” Airbus president of commercial aircraft Guillaume Faury tells reporters on 16 January. “Once this success is on track, it would be time for looking at what we do for the product.

“We are not there yet,” he adds. “We see the very strong potential.” Industry observers have suggested such an aircraft would be called the A220-500.

Faury made his comments in Mobile as Airbus prepared to host an event marking the start of construction of Airbus’s A220 Mobile assembly site.

Speculation had long swirled that the A220’s previous owner Bombardier might develop a larger version of the aircraft then called the CSeries. The line-up includes the A220-100, which can carry up to 135 seats, and the A220-300, which can accommodate up to 160 passengers. Bombardier always denied those suggestions.

Delta foresees delay to A220 service launch

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15 January 2019 by Kristin Mahcher

Delta Air Lines expects it could be forced to delay the start date for its Airbus A220 operations due to ramifications of the US government shutdown, management told analysts and media on an earnings call on 15 January.

“With non-essential work at the FAA shut down, our Airbus A220 start date is likely to be pushed back due to delays in the certification process,” says Delta chief executive Ed Bastian. The carrier did not expect to cancel any routes or flights, he clarified later in the call.

The comments reiterate previous concerns about the shutdown impacting the timeline for launching the new aircraft type, which the carrier had been planning to put into revenue service from 31 January. It plans to use the aircraft mainly on routes originating from coastal cities, such as from New York LaGuardia to Boston and Dallas/Fort Worth.

In addition, Bastian notes that the shutdown is also affecting the airline’s ability to put seven other aircraft deliveries into service. There could be potential impact on other aircraft such as the Airbus A330-900neos, Delta’s chief operating officer Gil West noted later in the call.

“It gets back into certification issues, that we certify seats and crew rest and things of that nature, wi-fi systems—that with the government shutdown become problematic for us,” he says.

The carrier does not foresee an immediate impact, he adds, but notes this could change later depending on how long the shutdown lasts.

Delta is also expecting the shutdown to have other consequences.

“With respect to the government shutdown, we are seeing some pressure on our business,” Bastian says. “On the revenue front we’re experiencing about $25 million per month in lower government travel.” The airline does not expect the shutdown to have a meaningful impact on its quarterly or yearly unit cost guidance.

Several US government departments have been shut since 22 December, with lawmakers at an impasse on federal spending after failing to reach an agreement over funding a wall on the US-Mexico border. Hundreds of thousands of federal employees have been furloughed or are working without pay.