PHOTO: Airbus.

LONDON — Following the launch of the Airbus A220, formally known as the CS100 and CS300 from Bombardier, JetBlue has placed an order for 60 A220-300 aircraft, with deliveries due to begin in 2020 respectively.

On top of this order, JetBlue has also converted 25 of their A320neos in their order book to A321neos instead and have adjusted their delivery schedules for these aircraft.

“We are evolving our fleet for the future of JetBlue, and the A220-300’s impressive range and economics offer us flexibility and support our key financial and operating priorities,” said Robin Hayes, chief executive officer, JetBlue.

“As we approach our 20th anniversary, the A220, combined with our A321 and restyled A320 fleet, will help ensure we deliver the best onboard experience to customers and meet our long-term financial targets as we continue disciplined growth into the future.”

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“JetBlue’s selection of the A220 aircraft as a complement to its growing A320 Family fleet is a tremendous endorsement – both of the A220 itself and of the way these two aircraft can work together to provide airline network flexibility and a great customer experience,” said Eric Schulz, Chief Commercial Officer for Airbus.

“JetBlue will be able to leverage the unbeatable efficiency of both the A321neo and the A220-300, as well as taking advantage of the roomiest and most customer-pleasing cabins of any aircraft in their size categories,” Schulz added.

“We’re honored by JetBlue’s confidence in selecting the A220-300 aircraft which adds to their existing order of the A320neo family of aircraft both powered by the Pratt & Whitney GTF engine,” said Chris Calio, president of commercial engines at Pratt & Whitney.

“We’ve been powering JetBlue with our V2500® engines since they started operations in 2000. We now look forward to also supporting JetBlue across their two new fuel-efficient, next-generation aircraft platforms,” Calio continued.

JetBlue will be using the Pratt and Whitney PW1500G engines for the A220-300 which will provide up to 40% lower fuel burn per seat than the airline’s current Embraer E190 fleet. The A220-300 will be replacing the E190s as they are phased out over the next few years.

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JetBlue said that they used thorough analysis to make their decision regarding the purchase of the A220-300. The additional range and passenger capacity will add flexibility to the carrier and enable them to operate to destinations which were previously deemed to be unprofitable.

“We expect the A220 to be an important long-term building block in our goal to deliver superior margins and create long-term shareholder value,” said Steve Priest, executive vice president and chief financial officer, JetBlue.

“We are confident the A220 will perform well in every aspect, including network, cost, maintenance, or customer experience. Simply put – our crewmembers, customers, and owners are going to love this aircraft,” Priest concluded.

While the E190 has played an important role in JetBlue’s network since 2005, the airline’s fleet review determined that the A220’s economics would allow the airline to lower costs in the coming years. The A220 was designed by the previous manufacturer Bombardier to seat between 130 and 160 customers, enabling financial and network advantages over the current 100-seat Embraer configuration.

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JetBlue will take the first five A220-300s in 2020 to celebrate the carrier’s 20th birthday with the remaining 55 being delivered between 2020-2025 and will coincide with the phasing out of the E190 aircraft.

The carrier does have an option to pursue an additional 60 of the type but will begin in 2025, even with the consideration of converting them into A220-100 (Bombardier CS100) orders if deemed necessary. The aircraft will be produced in Mobile, Alabama.

All-in-all, this has been a fantastic start to the launch of the A220 and as we approach Farnborough over the course of next week, this is obviously setting the tone for what a busy airshow the A220 is going to have!