Coverage by Chris Sloan
PARIS – Indigo Partners have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus for 50 A321XLR aircraft, which it says it will spread out across their airlines.
The MoU is split with a conversation for 18 A320neo Family aircraft and an order for 32 A321XLRs.
The order will be split out between the three airlines, with 20 being sent to Wizz Air, 18 to Frontier, and 12 to JetSMART.
Barry Biffle, President, and CEO of Frontier said: “This aircraft enables us to fly coast-to-coast in the united states, reach Hawaii with a full load, and opens interesting international opportunities in Latin and South America.”
Frontier is the first North American carrier to place an order for the A321XLR, and with Barry Biffle hinting at the possibility of new routes with these aircraft, it may drive other North American carriers to purchase these planes.
indigo Partners now have a combined total of 295 Airbus planes over their four carriers, Frontier Airlines (U.S.), JetSMART (Chile), Volaris (Mexico) and Wizz Air (Hungary) and now with these new commitments have an estimated 636 aircraft on order with Airbus.
Bill Franke, CEO Indigo Partners, said: “We are acquiring 50 A321XLR divided between our three carriers to expand their networks.”
“We have experience with the A320 family, so A321XLR is an early and timeline decision for us. Our business model is based on Indigo’s ULCC productivity and efficiency.”
The decision to move towards the A321XLR was a decision Wizz Air was always going to make, according to their CEO Jozsef Varadi, with the carrier already operating an all-Airbus fleet it makes sense to look to expand their route network for the XLR rather than the MAX.
With IndiGo Partners adding a big commitment to the XLR programme, it is a testament to its success after just launching on Monday.
It will be interesting to see what other orders are instore for the new variant and how much more success it will gain.