MIAMI — Malaysian budget carrier AirAsia has taken delivery today of its first Airbus A320neo aircraft. The jetliner is the first CFM LEAP-1A powered in Southeast Asia, and the second worldwide after Turkey’s Pegasus Airlines.
The aircraft (9M-NEO • MSN 7150) is the first of 200 aircraft ordered at the 2013 Paris Air Show. At the time, the $18.5 billion order set up a new record as the largest order ever placed for the narrowbody, and made the airline the biggest Airbus A320 family aircraft customer with 575 aircraft on order, including a recent order placed at the 2016 Farnborough Air Show for 100 A321neo.
Airbus chose the CFM LEAP-1A as one of the existing two power plant options for the A320neo in December 2010. The engine flew for the first time on the A320neo in May 2015, and after one year of tests and over 800 flight hours and 940 flights logged, the engine received the type certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Teething issues of the PW1100G engines, FADEC faults, and the documentation thereof caused Airbus to miss the proposed target of getting the first A320neo delivered in the fourth quarter of 2015. Didier Evrard, Executive Vice President Programs, Airbus, commented during the company’s Innovation Days that the delays may also affect the proposed goal of 650 jetliners delivered in 2016.