Airbus notched up firm orders for a further 55 examples of its now-flying A350 XWB airliner yesterday here in Paris, with Air France-KLM and Singapore Airlines signing major deals. The European airframer now has 668 firm orders for the A350. And, for good measure, Airbus also managed yesterday to close a major fleet-upgrade MoU with Sri Lankan Airlines.
The 2013 Paris Air Show is on track to be the one of the highest-value air shows ever in terms of new business announcements. A brief analysis by AIN showed that by the end of yesterday sales on the civil side alone had already topped $165 billion. This total covered airliners, helicopters, business aircraft and engines, but excluded any associated service contracts. It included a lot of as-yet unconfirmed options and commitments, but AIN did exclude any previously announced business (where the customer identity had simply been confirmed).
Turning heads at Le Bourget whenever it takes to the skies is Kamov’s Ka-52 helicopter. Its co-axial rotor blades and comprehensive weapons suite mark it out from the herd and, amazingly for a helicopter, it even has ejection seats. With the Ka-52 now in Russian army service and being touted for export, the design bureau is busy working on a maritime version for the Russian navy.
Airbus introduced C4you, a new customer care center for its private jet customers that provides dedicated access to an experienced team co-located within Airbus’s Airtac center in Toulouse. Customers will have access to technical advice on both their airframe and their cabin through a single point of contact and will also be able to benefit from packaged services such as arrangements to implement service bulletins.
A new firm order for seven E190 airliners from Venezuela’s Conviasa led Embraer’s commercial activity here yesterday. The deal involved a conversion of options from an order placed in July 2012 and raised Conviasa’s firm order count to 13 E190s. It still holds options for another seven.
Embraer also identified Japan Airlines as the customer for an order for four more E170s. With that deal, JAL has now placed firm orders for 15 E170s.
The new short takeoff and landing Antonov An-70 military transporter will soon complete joint state testing, according to Dmytro Kiva, Antonov president and general designer and academician of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. The An-70’s noise certification has been issued, he added.
The U.S. National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has honored Flexjet’s maintenance organization with a third consecutive Five Star Award, the association’s highest recognition offered for aviation maintenance technician training. To secure this standing, a company must have at least 90 percent of its AMTs participate in a qualified training program and complete a minimum of 12 hours of education per year. Flexjet achieved 100-percent participation from its maintenance technicians.
Leasing firm HGI yesterday placed a firm order for 10 ATR 72-600s for delivery to Brazilian carrier Passaredo Linhas Aéreas. The value of the deal, including options on another 10 airplanes, amounts to $482 million. HGI Capital Group also becomes a shareholder of Passaredo, following the approval of ANAC, Brazil’s National Agency for Civil Aviation.
Boeing has shifted its 737 Max schedules to reflect first delivery of the Max 8 to Southwest Airlines in the third quarter of 2017, as early as six months ahead of the original plan, Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president and general manager Scott Fancher revealed here in Paris yesterday. As a result, schedules for the Max 9 and Max 7 would also shift by at least a quarter. The company expects the program to reach firm design configuration in July. “The risks are understood, they’re being managed effectively and we have no serious technical issues to deal with,” said Fancher.
Aircraft propulsion and actuation systems supplier Woodward is nearly doubling its manufacturing footprint in Rockford, Illinois, reflecting the increased content the company has won on new narrowbody aircraft and derivatives.