MIAMI – Airbus announced today, Air Transat will lease ten Airbus A321LR through a deal with AerCap, making them the first North American operator of the aircraft. The Canadian airline plans the entry into service to start in 2019.

“This is an ideal aircraft for the North American market, and particularly for a carrier like Air Transat,” said John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer-Customers. “It gives operators a highly efficient and affordable modern option for their transatlantic routes, and we look forward to other North American carriers following Air Transat’s example.”

AerCap is the world’s largest Airbus A320neo family lessor, with 220 aircraft owned and on order. The aircraft family has new generation engines and Sharklets, delivering 15% fuel savings at delivery and 20% by 2020, as well as a 50% noise reduction.

“We are very proud of our long-standing partnership with Air Transat and are thrilled to play a significant role in the future growth of the airline,” said Aengus Kelly, Chief Executive Officer, AerCap. “The A321neo LR will significantly improve Air Transat’s fleet with the most efficient, longest-range single-aisle aircraft that offers an exceptional level of passenger comfort.”

The A321LR enables airlines to access new long-haul markets with 206 passengers in a typical two-class layout and offers the possibility for each passenger to carry up to three bags. The LR option extends the aircraft’s range to up to 4,000 nautical miles and brings with it a 30% reduction in operating cost.

“The A321neo LRs will perfectly complete our fleet of A330s and B737s,” said Jean-Marc Eustache, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transat. “These aircraft are also an ideal solution for replacing our A310s.”

He added: “This agreement with AerCap will allow us to continue offering our customers the service and comfort they are used to, at the best possible price. We are very pleased to strengthen our partnership with the world’s leading aircraft lessor, with which we have enjoyed a fruitful and long-standing association.”

The A321LR has 1,400 orders to date, and the A320neo aircraft family already has more than 5,100 orders from over 90 customers since its launch in 2010.