The first day of the Farnborough International Airshow 2010 on July 19, 2010 has seen Boeing announce orders for 55 Next-Generation 737-800s from two customers.
GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS), the commercial aircraft leasing and financing arm of General Electric, announced an order for 40 Next-Generation 737-800s. The order is valued at approximately $3 billion at average list prices.
Meanwhile, Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA signed an agreement at the show for 15 Boeing 737-800s, the airline exercising purchase rights from its 2007 order for 42 Next-Generation 737s plus purchase rights for an additional 42 aircraft. Norwegian’s latest order is valued at $1.15 billion at average list prices and increases the airline’s unfilled orders to 59 Next-Generation 737s.
“Today’s announcement with GECAS reaffirms the Boeing Next-Generation 737 as a highly successful asset, both in operation with airlines as well as in the financial community,” says Marlin Dailey, vice president of sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “GECAS has more than 300 Next-Generation 737s in its fleet with another 105 to be delivered to lessees, including today’s announcement.”
Norwegian Air Shuttle, which operates commercially as ‘Norwegian’, is the second-largest airline in Scandinavia and has a route portfolio that stretches across Europe into North Africa and the Middle East.
“We owe our success to our customers – almost 11 million passengers chose to fly with us in 2009. The Next-Generation 737 allows us to offer them on-time departures and arrivals, an environmentally-responsible and comfortable journey,” says Bjorn Kjos, CEO of Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA. “We recognize the tremendous value Boeing’s products and services bring to our business and are highly appreciative of the people of The Boeing Company.”
Norwegian’s landmark order in 2007 for 42 737-800s and 42 purchase rights was the largest-ever aircraft order from any Scandinavian carrier. Norwegian also is among the first airlines in the world to incorporate the new, spacious 737 Boeing Sky Interior into its 737s. The interior features soft, blue-sky-like lighting overhead, contemporary sculpted sidewalls and window reveals designed to draw passengers’ eyes to the airplanes’ windows, enhancing the passengers’ overall flying experience.
Boeing announced on May 18 that in early 2012 it would increase the production rate of 737NGs to 34 aircraft a month from the current 31.5, to satisfy customer demand for the popular single-aisle family.
“Increasing the production rate of the Next-Generation 737 was the right thing to do to support the growth ambitions of successful carriers like Norwegian,” says Dailey. “At the same time, we are improving the performance of the Next-Generation 737 to reduce fuel consumption and emissions by a further 2 per cent.”
Boeing routinely seeks environmental improvements throughout its product development process. In the case of the Next-Generation 737, improved aerodynamics, a lighter airframe, and a lighter and more powerful engine produced by the French-American CFM International partnership have led to major environmental gains compared to previous models, says Boeing.
Total sales of the Boeing 737 family since the type was introduced in 1967 have reached well over 8,000 aircraft.