AirAsia X, the long haul affiliate of Asia’s largest low cost airline, has signed a Memorandum of Understand (MOU) with Airbus for 50 A330-900neo aircraft. The agreement sees the airline become a launch customer for the latest version of the best-selling widebody. AirAsia X will also be one of the first operators of the aircraft, with deliveries to the carrier scheduled to begin in 2018.The agreement was signed at the Farnborough Airshow in the UK by Azran Osman-Rani, CEO of AirAsia X and Fabrice Brégier, President and CEO, Airbus, and was witnessed by Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, Co-founder and Director of AirAsia X, Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz, Chairman of AirAsia X Berhad and John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer, Customers
“We have been encouraging Airbus to launch this new version of the A330 for some time now,” said Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, Co-Founder and Director of AirAsia X. ”I am pleased that they are offering this choice and bringing us the aircraft we truly need to develop further our low cost long haul model. We are 100% sure that the A330neo will be quite unbeatable in its size category and we look forward to enabling more people to fly further more often aboard this great aircraft.”
“AirAsia X is the pioneer of successful low cost long haul travel,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO. “The confidence that Tony and his team have placed in the A330neo is therefore a clear endorsement of the step change we are bringing to the market in this size category. Reduced fuel consumption, extended long range capability and competitive acquisition costs will make the A330neo a true game changer and we are proud that AirAsia X will be among the first airlines to fly the aircraft.”
The latest MOU from AirAsia X further consolidates the position of the AirAsia Group as one of Airbus’s largest airline customers in the world. In total the Group has ordered 536 Airbus aircraft, excluding today’s MOU.
The A330-800neo and the A330-900neo are two new members of the Airbus Widebody Family launched in July 2014 with first deliveries scheduled to start in Q4 2017. The A330neo incorporates latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features. Benefitting from the unbeatable economics, versatility and high reliability of the A330, the A330neo reduces fuel consumption by 14% per seat, making it the most cost efficient, medium range Widebody aircraft on the market. In addition to greater fuel savings, A330neo operators will also benefit from a range increase of up to 400 nautical miles and all the operational commonality advantages of the Airbus Family.
Source: Airbus, an EADS N.V. company (Paris: EAD.PA)
Date: Jul 15, 2014