Major production achievement for Airbus’ modern, single-aisle aircraft family
Airbus delivered the A320 with manufacturer serial number (MSN) 5000 to Lebanon’s national carrier, Middle East Airlines (MEA). The aircraft was delivered from Airbus in Hamburg, Germany and is powered by International Aero Engines V2500 engines.
MSN5000 completes the deliveries of MEA’s total order for seven A320s. It marks a significant milestone for Airbus and the A320 Family going into 2012, as production rises from 38 to 40 per month during the first quarter of the year, and orders for the new A320neo reaffirm Airbus’ single-aisle Family as the most modern, fuel efficient in their category. MEA operates one of the most modern fleets in the region with four A330-200s, six A321 and including MSN5000, now seven A320 aircraft.
“We are honoured to become the operator of this brand new A320 with its distinctive serial number 5000 during the 25th anniversary year of the first flight of the A320 said MEA Chairman- Director General, Mohamad El Hout. “Since we first acquired an A320 Family aircraft in 2003, we have not only benefited from the outstanding operational efficiency of the aircraft but were also the first airline in the Middle East to introduce our wide-body cabin product on a single-aisle aircraft, thus offering our customers state of the art on-board entertainment with Audio/Video On Demand as well as a superbly comfortable and spacious cabin experience that has greatly contributed to MEA’s success.”
“Handing MSN5000 over to MEA is a real pleasure for Airbus. The Lebanese flag carrier has shown great courage maintaining its operations in the face of difficulty,” said Tom Enders, Airbus President and CEO. “It’s only natural that we pay tribute to MEA’s outstanding determination and recognise their unfailing loyalty with this landmark delivery. We look forward to seeing MEA continue to thrive and grow their network with our modern, fuel efficient Airbus family.”
Close to 8,300 A320 Family aircraft have already been ordered and more than 4,900 delivered to more than 350 customers and operators worldwide reaffirming its position as the world’s best-selling single-aisle aircraft family. The A320neo has over 95 percent airframe commonality with the current A320, making it an easy fit into existing fleets while offering up to 500 nautical miles (950 kilometres) more range or two tonnes more payload at a given range.