Friday, July 21, 2023

Air India's wide-body fleet to increase by 30% by March 2024: CEO & MD

Air India's wide-body fleet will increase by 30 per cent by March 2024 as the airline plans to add six new A350 aircraft, five leased B777-200LR planes and nine B777-300ER aircraft during this fiscal year, its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Managing Director (MD) Campbell Wilson said on Friday.

Air India has a total 125 planes--51 wide-body planes and 74 narrow-body--in its fleet, according to aviation analytics firm Cirium. The airline had in 2022 leased a total of 42 planes: four narrow-body A321neo, five wide body B777-200LR, six wide body B777-300ER and 27 narrow body A320neo. The delivery of the leased planes is expected by June 2024.

Air India had in February placed the world's single largest aircraft order for 470 planes: 250 with European planemaker Airbus and 220 with American giant Boeing. From Airbus, Air India has ordered 40 wide-body A350 planes and 210 A320neo family planes. From Boeing, the airline has ordered 10 wide body B777X planes, 20 wide body B787 planes and 190 narrow body B737Max planes.

The first A350 will be delivered by Airbus within the next "few months", Wilson told employees in a message that has been reviewed by Business Standard.

"One key step on the transformation journey is our new fleet, so I’m delighted to share that the DGCA this week issued the Letter of Type Acceptance for our Rolls-Royce-powered A350s. This paves the way for us to initiate various activities related to the induction of this aircraft, the first of which is now only a few months away," Wilson mentioned.

21/07/2023 Deepak Patel/Business Standard

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