Carrier aims to expand its fleet with highly efficient, low cost A320 Family aircraft
China's Chongqing Airlines has taken delivery of the first of three Airbus A319s it has agreed to lease from ILFC, at a delivery ceremony in Hamburg, Germany.
The aircraft will be able to accommodate 122 passengers in a two-class configuration, with eight first class seats. The company, which is located in Chongqing, the centre of China's most populated Southwest region, plans to operate the A319 on the route to some of the most popular tourist destinations in the region.
Chongqing Airlines was set up in October 2007 jointly by China Southern Airlines and Chongqing International Invest Co. The company currently operates four A320s. From March to May 2009, the company will receive three new leased A319s. The new aircraft will help Chongqing Airlines expand its network and open up new routes in the country.
"We look forward to introducing the world?s best selling single-aisle aircraft, which features high efficiency and low operational costs, to build up our fleet", said Liu Qing, Vice President of Chongqing Airlines. "The A319s will help to strengthen our competitiveness and profitability in the domestic market and pave the way for our future development."
"We are pleased that the newly established Chongqing Airlines has chosen efficient Airbus A320 Family aircraft to develop its fleet", said John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer Customers. "The A320 Family commonality concept will definitely offer operational and economic advantages to the airline."
The A320 Family, which includes the A318, A319, A320 and A321, is recognized as the benchmark single-aisle aircraft family. Each aircraft features fly-by-wire controls and all share a unique cockpit and operational commonality across the range. Around 6,300 Airbus A320 Family aircraft have been sold and more than 3,700 delivered to some 220 customers and operators worldwide, making it the world's best-selling commercial jetliner ever. With proven reliability and extended servicing periods, the A320 Family has the lowest operating costs of any single-aisle aircraft. Uniquely, the A320 Family offers a containerized cargo system, which is compatible with the world wide standard wide-body system.