Austrian Airlines' supervisory board has approved the purchase of 17 Embraer 195s from sister Lufthansa Group company Lufthansa CityLine, to replace 15 aging Fokker...

Austrian Airlines’ supervisory board has approved the purchase of 17 Embraer 195s from sister Lufthansa Group company CityLine, to replace 15 aging Fokker 100s and seven Fokker 70s Austrian now has in service.

In return, CityLine will receive up to 21 Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen jets from sister Lufthansa Group carrier Eurowings.


Lufthansa Group's orders for Embraer E-Jets grew to 38 aircraft following a December 9, 2010 order for eight Embraer 195s. All 38 will be in service by the first half of 2012 with the three Lufthansa Regional-branded carriers Air Dolomiti, Augsburg Airways and CityLine. All of Lufthansa's E-Jet orders have been for the two largest members of the E-Jet family, the Embraer 190 and Embraer 195

On June 3, 2015, Austrian Airlines’ supervisory board approved the purchase of the 17 Embraer 195s operated by Lufthansa Group sister carrier Lufthansa CityLine, to replace 15 Fokker 100s and seven Fokker 70s in Austrian service. Lufthansa CityLine would in turn take up to 21 Bombardier CRJ900 NextGens from another Lufthansa Group carrier, Eurowings

 

Eurowings ‒ into which Lufthansa Group’s existing Germanwings low-cost operation will eventually be merged, to create an airline with more than 100 aircraft ‒ is re-fleeting with Airbus A320-family jets as a result of the group’s decision to create a new, lower-cost operation for operations both throughout Europe and on long-haul leisure routes.

According to Austrian Airlines, each of the 17 Embraer 195s it is buying is “in almost new condition” ‒ Lufthansa CityLine took delivery of the 17 aircraft from 2009 to 2012 ‒ and the estimated list-price value of the purchase is “close to US$900 million”.

“A decision was made today on one of the largest investment projects in the history of Austrian aviation. 900 jobs are directly connected to this investment program,” says Andreas Otto, chief commercial officer of Austrian Airlines.

Austrian Airlines will take delivery of its first Embraer 195 in August, with the aircraft to be modified in line with Austrian Airlines cabin-interior and operation standards and used for training.

One of several Lufthansa Group carriers to operate Embraer 195s is Italian airline Air Dolomiti. An Air Dolomiti Embraer 195 takes off from Verona Villafranca Airport, where the airline is based and headquartered. In the background can be seen the high peaks of the Dolomites, the mountain range in northern Italy for which Air Dolomiti is named

One of two Lufthansa Group carriers to operate Embraer 195s is Italian airline Air Dolomiti. Here, an Air Dolomiti Embraer 195 is seen taking off from Verona Villafranca Airport, where the airline is based and headquartered. In the background can be seen the high peaks of the Dolomites, the mountain range in northern Italy for which Air Dolomiti is named

 

Nearly 200 Austrian Airlines pilots will be re-trained to operate the Embraer 195, beginning this fall.

Austrian Airlines is planning for its first commercial flight with the Embraer 195 to take place in January 2016.

With 120 seats in Austrian Airlines configuration, the Embraer 195 is considerably larger than the Fokker aircraft it will replace. Austrian operates each Fokker 70 in 80-seat configuration, while each Fokker 100 has 100 seats.

At present, the Lufthansa CityLine Embraer 195s have an average age of four years, compared to an average age of about 21 years for Austrian’s Fokker fleet. As a result, the replacement of the aircraft will significantly rejuvenate the Austrian Airlines fleet, the airline says.

Austrian's Airlines' short-haul and regional-airliner fleet, operated under the Austrian Arrows brand, includes 15 Fokker 100s and seven Fokker 70s, as well as 13 Bombardier Q400 turboprops

Austrian’s Airlines’ short-haul and regional-airliner fleet, operated under the Austrian Arrows brand, includes 15 Fokker 100s and seven Fokker 70s, as well as 13 Bombardier Q400 turboprops

 

According to Austrian, the Embraer 195 uses about 18 per cent less fuel per aircraft seat than do the Fokker jets, on equivalent sectors.

Through Tyrolean Airways, Austrian has operated Fokker 70s since 1994 and Fokker 100s since 2004. However, the Fokker 100 first entered service in 1986 and the Fokker 70 entered service in 1993.

According to Austrian Airlines, the Embraer 195 also cruises at a faster speed and has a higher cruise ceiling than do the Fokker 70 and Fokker 100. The Embraer jet cruises at 451kt (835km/h), while the Fokker 70 and Fokker 100 cruise at 408kt (755km/h).

The Embraer 195’s service ceiling is 41,000ft (12,500m), whereas the service ceiling for the Fokker 70 and Fokker 100 is 39,000ft (11,900m).

Bombardier Q400 OE-LGM, operated by Tyrolean Airways for Austrian Airlines, arrives at Salzburg Airport W. A. Mozart on the sunny afternoon of October 20, 2013

Bombardier Q400 OE-LGM, operated by Austrian Airlines, arrives at Salzburg Airport W. A. Mozart on the sunny afternoon of October 20, 2013

 

However, although the Embraer 195 has a much higher maximum gross take-off weight (MGTOW) than does the Fokker 70, at 112,000lb (50.8 tonnes) compared with the Fokker 70’s 88,185lb (40.0 tonnes), its range is very similar to the smaller of the two Fokker jet types currently in Austrian Airlines service.

The Embraer 195 has a range with maximum payload of 1,190nm (2,204km), while the Fokker 70 has a 1,157nm (2,143km) range with maximum payload.

However, the Fokker 100, which has a MGTOW of 98,105lb (44.5 tonnes), has a markedly inferior range than both other types, offering a range with maximum payload of 1,013nm (1,876km), according to Austrian Airlines.

Austrian Airlines also operates a short-haul fleet of 18 Bombardier Q400 turboprop regional airliners.

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