TOULOUSE — Airbus has increased both the maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of the A220 aircraft, as well as its range by an additional 450 nautical miles.
This news was announced earlier today at the Airbus Innovation Days event in Toulouse, France.
The A220 will see an increase of 2,268 kg (2.3 metric tonnes) in its MTOW, which Airbus says will now enhance the A220-100 and A220-300 aircraft with a new range of 3,400 and 3,350 nautical miles, respectively.
The new increase in both weight and rage will allow A220 customers to deploy the aircraft across more routes around the globe, giving them the flexibility to increase their route network to further destinations while offering better cost per seat.
Airbus Chief Commercial Officer Christan Scherer said today that “this new MTOW will allow operators to reach markets where they today cannot be served by other small single-aisle aircraft types.”
While this remains speculation the new MTOW weight of the A220 could encourage British Airways to revive its ultra-premium London City – New York service with the A220-100.
The increase in the MTOW has been brought to Airbus with their new innovation and new design models.
The introduction of Virtual Reality for aircraft designers and engineers has allowed Airbus as with many other companies around the world to look and assess problems that the aircraft have to make them not only more efficient but increase their capability for their customers.
Rob Dewar, Head of Engineering & Customer Support for the A220, noted that since the plane’s entry-into-service close to three years ago, “the A220 aircraft has proven that it is meeting or beating its initial performance target, bringing more flexibility and revenue potential to customers.”
“Today, Airbus is reinforcing its confidence in the A220 platform and further enhancing its capabilities to meet upcoming market requirements,” Dewar added.
The A220, formerly known as Bombardier CSeries, was a clean sheet aircraft designed by Canadian manufacturer Bombardier, from which Airbus purchased a 51% stake in the program last year.
The acquisition of this aircraft program has allowed Airbus to close the market gap they were missing in their fleet range, right in between the Airbus A318 and A319.
During a live Q&A with Airbus Chief Commercial Officer, Christian Scherer and associated members of the press, he was asked what the future plans where for Airbus in regards to the ramp up in production of the A320 and A220, and what future that the A319neo would have when the A220-300 is a slightly more efficient version of the aircraft, with similar ranges and passenger capacity.
“Airbus will build what the customers want, we will continue with production of the A220 and A319neo and offer both aircraft to our customers around the globe,” Scherer responded.
The CCO went on to talk about the A220 and A320 production increase to which he stated that the manufacturer is looking to increase the A320 production to 63 aircraft a month and that for now they were only looking at adding a second production line to the A220 aircraft and are not looking at increasing that in the immediate future.
This week, Airbus also celebrated an important milestone with the delivery of its 12,000th commercial aircraft.
Delta Air Lines welcomed the delivery of its 12th A220-100, celebrating with Airbus the tremendous accomplishment of the 12,000th plane manufactured under the Airbus brand.
The Airbus backlog remains steady at around 7,287 aircraft. Should these numbers see an increase, we could see the 20,000th Airbus aircraft delivered by the end of the next decade.
Stay tuned for more Airbus news live from Toulouse.