DALLAS — Air India (AI), under the TATA Group, has plans to more than triple its fleet size. Its much-touted 500-plane order is about to be announced, and leasing behemoth AirLease Corp commented on the subject today at the Airline Economics conference in Dublin, Ireland.
“As a result of this recovery, there is now more momentum for large orders from airlines who have sort of sat back and watched the movie, and now they’re seeing there’s going to be a positive trend,” Steven Udvar-Hazy, executive chairman of AirLease Corp, told the Airline Economics conference as stated on Reuters.
“We have this 500-aircraft order coming out of India, which is going to be about 400 narrow-body aircraft, probably a mix of (Airbus) A320neos, A321neos, and (Boeing) 737 MAXs, and 100 wide-bodies, which will include (Boeing) 787s, 777X, potentially some 777 freighters, and (Airbus) A350s.”
As per Reuters, industry sources say finalizing the proposed deal depends on ongoing negotiations with engine makers. AI did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Airbus and Boeing had no immediate comment.
Aircraft Orders Beyond Just Air India
Udvar-Hazy further said, “We do expect a number of airlines will place large orders and again most of these orders will be for replacement”
“We expect that both OEMs will be under pressure in the next couple of years to increase production rates, not necessarily back to the levels they were in 2018, but certainly well above current production.”
Air India’s current fleet stands at 113 according to planespotters.net, the split:
- 68 belonging to the Airbus A320 family ( eighteen A319-100, thirty-sixA320 CEO/NEO, and fourteen A321-200)
- 18 Boeing 777 jets ( five 777-200LR and thirteen 777-300ER)
- 27 Boeing 787-8 jets.
Featured image: Air India VT-EXM Airbus A320-251N. Photo: Alberto Cucini/Airways