United Airlines has placed a new order for 25 Boeing 737-700s, in addition to its January 21 order for 40 of the type.
Additionally, the airline announced it will convert 787 orders originally anticipated for delivery in 2020 and beyond into orders for four 777-300ERs and five 787-9s, for delivery beginning in 2017.
The airline’s latest 737-700 deal represents a second blow for Bombardier Aerospace, which has been trying to interest United in ordering C Series jets to fulfill the airline’s remaining 60-aircraft requirement for 100-to-130-seat jets in the wake of United’s 40-aircraft 737-700 order on January 21.
United will take delivery of its new 737-700s from the end of 2017. It will use them to replace 50-seat regional jets on its network with larger, more efficient aircraft.
“The new 737-700 aircraft are ideal for our fleet as we continue to reduce our reliance on 50-seat aircraft,” says Gerry Laderman, United’s senior vice president of finance and acting chief financial officer.
According to United, it expects fewer than 100 50-seat regional jets to be operating on the United Express network by the end of 2019.
United says its 787 order conversions will accommodate the accelerated retirement of its 747-400s, while also meeting United’s capacity needs.
Having announced the 787 order conversions, United then announced it would retire its 747 fleet from scheduled service by the end of 2018.
In addition to the order and conversions United announced on March 8, the airline has firm orders outstanding for 35 Airbus A350-1000s, 153 aircraft from the Boeing 737 family, 10 Boeing 777-300ERs and 27 Boeing 787s.
United also has firm orders outstanding for 10 Embraer 175s, which regional carriers will operate on its behalf on the United Express network.