Industryweek 3648 A350 2

Air Lease Corp. Places Giant Order with Airbus

Feb. 4, 2013
"These aircraft will help airlines grow their businesses while simultaneously reducing their operating costs and emissions," said Air Lease chief executive Steven Udvar-Hazy. 

PARIS -- Air Lease Corp. has placed a giant order for airliners built by Airbus worth about $9 billion, Airbus said Monday.

The order is for 20 A350-900 aircraft, five A350-1000, and also converts an option for 14 fuel-efficient A321neo aircraft into an order, Airbus said in a statement.

The chief executive of Air Lease Steven Udvar-Hazy said in a statement that the A350 XWB (extra wide body) airliner "is becoming the industry benchmark for efficiency in the long haul segment, and the A320neo family is ideal for airlines operating short to medium-haul missions."

He said: "These aircraft will help airlines grow their businesses while simultaneously reducing their operating costs and emissions."

He added that his company aimed to offer its customers "the most modern, efficient aircraft on the market, and both the A350 XWB and the NEO fit right in that category."

The A350 is due to enter service in the second half of 2014.

The aircraft is intended to compete with the Boeing 777 aircraft made by Boeing Co. and with the grounded Boeing Dreamliner 787.

Airbus hopes that the new aircraft will enable it to end Boeing's dominance of the market for long-range airliners.

The A350 XWB family of aircraft is made mainly of composite materials based on carbon. It is being offered in three versions capable of carrying 270 to 350 passengers.

The first version to be put into service will be the A350-900 with 314 seats. It will be followed in 2016 by the A350-800 with 270 seats and in 2017 by the A350-1000 with 350 seats.

Airbus said Air Lease also has taken an option on an extra five A350-1000 aircraft.

The Airbus statement said the A320neo series of aircraft, due to enter in service in 2015, would deliver up to 15% in fuel savings, equivalent to the consumption of 1,000 mid-size cars. Each aircraft would save 3,600 tons of CO2 per year, Airbus said.

The manufacturer said the A320 family of aircraft, with more than 9,000 aircraft ordered and more than 5,400 aircraft delivered to more than 380 customers, was the world's "best-selling single-aisle aircraft family."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013

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