In an estimated $8 billion deal to renew its fleet, American Airlines said on Oct. 15 it had ordered 42 of Boeing's new fuel-efficient 787 Dreamliners.
Deliveries of the aircraft were scheduled between 2012 and 2018, with an option to buy 58 more of the 787 fuel-efficient aircraft between 2015 and 2020.
The 787 purchase agreement contains provisions that hinge on American reaching an agreement with its pilots union to operate the new aircraft, the company said. Under those provisions, American may choose not to acquire some or all of the 42 initial 787s if it has not reached a "satisfactory" agreement with its pilots union on the matter.
"Even as we battle the challenges of volatile and historically high fuel prices and serious economic uncertainty, we must continue to prudently invest in our company for the long-term benefit of our shareholders, customers, employees and the communities we serve," Gerard Arpey, chairman and chief executive of the airline's parent AMR Corporation, said.
"The 787 will help reduce our fuel and maintenance costs, lessen our environmental impact, and support our goal of providing industry-leading products and services over the long haul," Arpey added
Boeing says it has received nearly 900 orders to date for the 787 Dreamliner from more than 55 customers worldwide. But Boeing has warned a machinists strike may force it to delay the first flight of the 787, scheduled later this year. Boeing's 27,000 machinists, who represent 16%of the company's workforce, went on strike on September 6 after the collapse of three-year contract talks. The strike has forced Boeing to halt aircraft production and could be costing more than $100 million per day, analysts say.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008