Sunday, 4 November 2018

Aer Lingus to maximize Airbus A321LR opportunities

Image courtsey of Airbus 
Aer Lingus mission statement "Our mission is to be the leading value carrier across the North Atlantic. Enabled by a profitable and sustainable short-haul network…Supported by a guest focused, brand and digitally enabled value proposition…Delivering above average returns on invested capital for our IAG shareholders".

Speaking at IAG Capital Market Day on Friday 2 November Aer Lingus CEO Stephen Kavanagh outlined a strategy to maximize the opportunities presented by the new Airbus A321LR aircraft.

The first three new Airbus A321LR aircraft will be delivered in 2019 as the carrier plans ambitious expansion to grow the fleet to 14 units by 2023. A futher 5 will be delivered in 2020 and 4 in 2021 and 1 each in 2022 and 2023.  The leased Boeing 757-200s will be phased out in 2020.

A key feature of the new A321LR will be unlocking new city pair opportunities with new engine technology enabling the carrier to insulate against rising fuel costs. The aircraft will enable cost efficient fleet growth as the A321LR can operate inbound across the Atlantic to Dublin, and then on to European destinations. Aer Lingus CEO Stephen Kavanagh added “This growth is CASK-efficient growth".

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on 2 October concurrent certification for the Airbus A321neo to operate with up to three additional center fuel tanks, allowing it to fly up to 4,000 nautical miles with 206 passengers.

Corresponding ETOPS authorization enables up to 180 minutes of single-engine diversion time, a sufficient standard for performing any transatlantic route, according to Airbus.

According to reports Airbus expects to deliver the first A321LR by the end of the year to  Arkia, which became the de facto launch customer when, according to the manufacturer,  Primera Air (Ceased Operations 2 October) deferred delivery of two from lease company AerCap.

Irish Aviation Research Institute © 4 November 2018 All Rights Reserved 

Boeing commences production of first Ryanair Boeing 737 MAX 200

Image courtesy of Boeing 
A tweet by Woodys Aeroimages on 31 October revealed Boeing commenced production of the first Ryanair Boeing 737 MAX 200 with the wing/body join position in final assembly. It will become the first airline to operate the MAX 200 after it takes delivery of the first five aircraft in March and April next year.

Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary said "The Max 200 aircraft, the game changer, have 4 percent more seats [compared with its 189-seat Boeing 737-800s] and a 16 percent lower fuel consumption per seat. These will drive very significant unit cost gains for us over the next five or six years."

The carrier plans to take delivery of 42 aircraft between August 2019 and March 2020. The MAX 200 will account for approximately 10% of their fleet in the fiscal year through March 2020.

In Ryanair's annual SEC 20F file the airline stated "The new aircraft will be used on new and existing routes to grow Ryanair’s business.

The basic price (equivalent to a standard list price for an aircraft of this type) for each of the Boeing 737-MAX-200 series aircraft is approximately US$102 million and the basic price will be increased for certain "buyer-furnished" equipment, amounting to approximately US$1.6 million per new aircraft, which Ryanair has asked Boeing to purchase and install on each of the new aircraft".

The SEC Filing further added "Boeing has granted Ryanair certain price concessions as part of the 2014 Boeing Contract. As a result, the "effective price" (the purchase price of the new aircraft net of discounts received from Boeing) of each new aircraft will be significantly below the basic price mentioned above. The effective price applies to all new aircraft due for delivery from Spring 2019."

Irish Aviation Research Institute © 4 November 2018 All Rights Reserved