At the 2013 Paris Air Show, Airbus won US$68.7 billion worth of business for a total of 466 aircraft, which shows the resilience of the commercial aviation industry. The deals comprise Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) for 225 aircraft worth US$29.4 billion and firm purchase orders for 241 aircraft worth US$39.3 billion.
The A320 Family, spearheaded by the A320neo, continues its trailblazing success in the single-aisle market with 371 orders and commitments from six customers announced at the show, worth approximately $37.8 billion. Of these, 88 were for the A320ceo – showing that today’s in-production aircraft is still the most sought-after industry workhorse. A stand-out commitment during the show for the A320 Family was the announcement from easyJet for 100 A320neos plus 35 A320ceos – the winning result of a very intense competition. Another major endorsement for the A320 Family came from Lufthansa with the firming-up of 100 more aircraft. Additional A320 Family orders and commitments came from: Hong Kong Aviation Capital for 60; ILFC for 50; Spirit for 20; and Tunisia’s Syphax Airlines for three – significantly the first A320neo commitment from Africa.
Another star at Paris was the A350 XWB which flew for the first time on Friday 14th June 2013 and successfully completed its second flight on Wednesday 19th June. At the show this aircraft gained 69 more orders & commitments worth $21.4 billion from four customers on different continents. Air France-KLM placed a firm order for 25 A350-900s. Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines, already a large customer for the type, returned to order 30 more A350-900s; United Airlines also placed an additional A350 order for 10 A350-1000s — not only bringing its total A350 orders to 35, but also upgrading its previous order for 25 A350-900s to the larger A350-1000 model to replace its Boeing 777s. In addition, Sri Lankan signed a commitment for four A350-900s to complement an order for six A330-300s at the show.
At the top end of the product range, the flagship A380 received a commitment for 20 aircraft from the world’s third largest wide-body lessor, Doric Lease Corp, in a deal worth more than $8 billion. The contract with Doric is significant as it opens up a new, additional route to market for the A380, which is now available to airlines who wish to acquire the aircraft under the flexibility of an operating lease agreement.
John Leahy, Airbus’s Chief Operating Officer, Customers said: “The dramatic rainfall and thunder storms at Le Bourget this year didn’t dampen our order intake.” He added: “Our A350 XWB has been out-selling the 787 by better than 2- to-1 over the last five years. In addition our A320neo Family retains a 60 percent market share lead. That’s a ‘corner’ I want to stay boxed into.”
In addition to aircraft order announcements, this year’s show saw some operators take delivery of new Airbus aircraft. Most notably, LATAM Airlines Group, one of Airbus’ largest A320 customers, received its 200th A320 at Le Bourget. The aircraft was fitted with Sharklet fuel-saving wingtip devices – an option now proving to be universally popular on this family of aircraft. Meanwhile Air New Zealand – the launch airline to commit to these fuel saving devices – took delivery of its first A320 equipped with Sharklets. In addition, VIP operator Comlux took delivery of the first Airbus ACJ321, which will make it the first Airbus Corporate Jet customer to have every Airbus A320 Family member in its fleet.
Airbus is the world’s leading commercial aircraft manufacturer producing the most modern and efficient airliners in every category, from the single-aisle A320 Family up to the world’s largest airliner, the A380. Airbus has design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK, and Spain as well as subsidiaries in the US, China, Japan and in the Middle East. Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is an EADS company.