At the Le Bourget International Air Show in Paris today, JetBlue Airways and Airbus announced a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for the airline to purchase 40 A320neo (new engine option) aircraft. The airline has not yet announced its engine selection for the new engine option aircraft.
In addition, the MOU will result in JetBlue converting 30 of its current orders for A320 aircraft to the larger A321 model with enhanced wingtip devices called Sharklets.
The New York-based airline has long made the A320 Family the core of its fleet, starting with the delivery of its very first aircraft in 1999, an Airbus A320, one of 173 it has ordered in total – not including today’s announcement.
“JetBlue’s very first flight was operated by an A320, and with today’s news, we are further planning our future fleet with Airbus, our longest-standing business partner,” said Dave Barger, President and CEO of JetBlue Airways. “This fleet announcement is driven by our successful network strategy, and it also supports our financial goal of sustainable growth while respecting our energy and environmental responsibilities. And our crewmembers and customers love the Airbus.”
“JetBlue is already one of the largest A320 Family operators in the world,” said John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer Customers. “By adding the A320neo and the A321 with Sharklets to its fleet, the airline is demonstrating why it continues to grow and lead so successfully – it drives evolution in the industry with the latest technology and trends.”
The A320neo, launched in late 2010, is the latest product innovation at Airbus. These new A319, A320 and A321 models feature a choice of two new engines – the PurePower PW1100G from Pratt & Whitney or the LEAP-X from CFM International. The aircraft also feature large wingtip devices known as Sharklets. Together this results in a 15 percent fuel burn reduction, corresponding to an annual carbon dioxide reduction of 3,600 metric tons per aircraft.
Airbus is the leading aircraft manufacturer with the most modern and comprehensive family of airliners on the market, ranging in capacity from 100 to more than 500 seats. More than 10,100 Airbus aircraft have been sold to more than 440 customers and operators worldwide, and more than 6,700 have been delivered since the company first entered the market in the early seventies.