Industry Airbus launches new A321XLR on Paris Air Show 2019

On Paris Air Show 2019, Airbus has officially launched the longest-range sing-aisle airliner: The A321XLR.

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Aircraft manufacturer Airbus has announced, that it will offer a new version of its popular A321 series. The so-called A321XLR is set to become the single-aisle airline with the longest flying range. XLR stands for Xtra Long Range, meaning the aircraft is capable of flying up to 4,700nm without refuelling.

According to the manufacturer, Airbus received very positive feedback from the market for an aircraft that can fly longer range. Now, airlines are able to use the next evolution of the A321 to service new markets. In addition to the range, the aircraft will also bring a 30% lower fuel burn per seat. Airbus will start to deliver the first XLR aircraft in 2023.

Airbus said, that the A321XLR can operate flights from India to Europe or from China to Australia. Additionally, the non-stop reach on transatlantic flights between continental Europe and the Americas could become important for operators.

In a statement, Airbus wrote: "The A321XLR has been designed to maximize overall commonality with the A321LR and the rest of the A320neo Family, while introducing minimal changes needed to give the aircraft an Xtra Long Range with increased revenue payload."

A321XLR infographic

The changes are a new permanent Rea Centre Tank (RCT) for more fuel volume, a new landing gear that enables an increased maximum take-off weight of 101 metric tonnes, and a new flap configuration, which preserves the same performance requirements as the current A321neo. Additional Centre Tanks can be equipped optionally.

On the Paris Air Show 2019, several airlines committed to purchase the new 321XLR. Air Lease Corporation signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) for 27 A321XLRs, Middle East Airlines decided to purchase four firm A321XLRs, Cebu Pacific 10 A321XLRs. Saudi Arabian Airlines ordered 15 and IAG Group 14 A321XLR. Qantas signed an agreement for 36 and Indigo Partners for 50 aircraft. American Airlines then agreed to purchase 50 XLRs, Flynas 10 and JetBlue Airways converted 13 A321neo orders into firm orders for the new aircraft.

All in all, Airbus had a good start into the XLR programme, with several airlines backing the new product. Boeing meanwhile did not announce a Middle-of-Market aircraft on the PAS19.

Source © airbus.com

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