LAN Airlines has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) at the Farnborough International Airshow to order 50 new Airbus A320-family aircraft.
Its MOU with Airbus – signed on July 20, 2010 – will be the largest-ever single airline order for Airbus in Latin America and will bring LAN’s total Airbus orders to 152 aircraft.
The new deal follows hard on the heels of a firm order for 30 single-aisle Airbus A320-family aircraft that LAN Airlines placed in December 2009. The airline currently operates 58 Airbus aircraft and has been an A320-family customer since the late 1990s.
The commitment includes 10 A321s, a new aircraft type for LAN. The airline’s request for incremental A320-family aircraft is part of LAN’s growth strategy for Latin America. The aircraft will serve as new and replacement aircraft for both existing and new routes, according to Airbus.
“We confirm our commitment to the development of commercial aviation in Latin America, incorporating the best technology and offering our customers one of the world’s most modern fleets,” says Ignacio Cueto, LAN Airlines’ chief operating officer. “We continue investing in order to contribute to the economic growth and social development of the countries in the region.”
“The LAN and Airbus partnership in Latin America has really prospered in the last 12 years. We are convinced that our benchmark aircraft will further advance LAN’s leadership position in the region,” said John Leahy, Airbus chief operating officer, customers. “We appreciate LAN’s strong and clear vote of confidence in Airbus and look forward to many more years of continued collaboration.”
With almost 500 aircraft sold and a record backlog of more than 200 aircraft to be delivered to its Latin American customers, Airbus says that today more than 370 of its aircraft are flying with 23 Latin American airline customers and operators, representing more than 40 per cent of the fleet in service.
At the Farnborough show LAN also signed a deal for all 50 A320-family jets covered under the new MOU and 20 previously ordered aircraft to be powered by CFM56-5B engines. It is the single largest engine order in LAN’s 81-year history, according to CFM International (CFMI), the General Electric-Snecma partnership that makes the CFM56 engine. (With more than 21,000 CFM56s sold, the CFM56 is the most successful commercial jet engine family ever.) The deal also represents the single largest engine order by a Latin American airline, says CFMI.
LAN’s new CFM56-5B order is valued at approximately $2 billion U.S. at list price, including installed and spare engines and an associated maintenance agreement. To support its new fleet of engines, LAN chose a 12-year rate-per-flight -our (RPFH) agreement with CFM. The RPFH is a comprehensive maintenance program customized to LAN Airlines’ specific needs, under which CFM guarantees the maintenance cost on a dollar-per-engine-flight-hour basis.