AviancaTaca took delivery of its 100th aircraft from Airbus on September 17 in Toulouse, when Avianca accepted its ninth new A330-200 from the manufacturer.
Like the rest of Avianca’s Airbus A330-200 widebodies, the carrier’s ninth of the type is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines. AviancaTaca has eight more A330-200s on order.
Avianca configures its A330-200s to seat 252 passengers – 30 in business class and 222 in economy.
Apart from the A330-200’s ability to operate economically on both long- and short-haul point-to-point routes, Airbus says the type’s economic benefits also include operational commonality with the Airbus A330-200 Freighter, of which AviancaTaca has ordered four for subsidiary Tampa Cargo.
“The integration of this 100th Airbus aircraft to the AviancaTaca fleet is a reflection of both our and Airbus’ commitment to strengthening the aviation industry in Latin America,” said Fabio Villegas, CEO of AviancaTaca. “With this new aircraft, we are not only increasing our passenger offering, but we are also furthering AviancaTaca’s expansion program and improving customer service, which are our top priorities.”
“AviancaTaca has one of the youngest fleets in Latin America, averaging five years,” noted Rafael Alonso, executive vice president of Airbus for Latin America & the Caribbean.
The A330-200 now offers a higher maximum gross takeoff weight capability of 238 metric tonnes, achieved with no operating empty-weight increase. According to Airbus, this translates into around 330 nautical miles more range, giving the aircraft 7,250nm endurance or an extra 3.4 tonnes of payload.
With orders for more than 1,220 aircraft to date and more than 900 aircraft delivered to over 90 operators, the Airbus A330 family is achieving average dispatch reliability above 99 per cent, according to the manufacturer.
With nearly an all-Airbus fleet, Avianca and Taca have combined orders outstanding for 190 aircraft and now operates 100 Airbus aircraft, including 91 A320-family jets and nine A330-200s.
AviancaTaca has an order backlog of more than 80 Airbus aircraft, including 10 Airbus A350-900 widebody twins. The group’s only other order outstanding is for 15 Boeing 787-8 widebodies, deliveries of which are due to start in 2014.
With more than 700 aircraft sold in Latin America and a backlog of nearly than 350 aircraft to be delivered to airlines based there, Airbus has more than 450 aircraft in operation throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.
In the past 10 years, Airbus tripled its in-service fleet in Latin America and the Caribbean, while delivering more than 60 per cent of all aircraft operating in the region.