Industry British Airways to receive up to 42 Boeing 777X

Boeing and the International Airlines Group (IAG) have announced, that British Airways will receive up to 42 Boeing 777X aircraft throughout a fleet renewal plan.

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The parent company of British Airways, IAG group, has committed to purchase up to 42 Boeing 777X widebody aircraft. The order includes 18 firm orders and 24 purchase rights. According to current list prices, the deal is valued at up to US$ 18.6 billion.

This order confirms British Airways´ fleet renewal plans. After the carrier announced, it is planning to phase out the current Boeing 747 fleet by 2024; a successor was needed. After long talks with Boeing and Airbus, the IAG group and British Airways have now decided to choose the 777-9 as future backbone of the carrier´s long-haul fleet.

Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: "The new 777-9 is the world's most fuel-efficient long-haul aircraft and will bring many benefits to British Airways' fleet. It's the ideal replacement for the 747, and its size and range will be an excellent fit for the airline's existing network [...] This aircraft will provide further cost efficiencies and environmental benefits with fuel cost per seat improvements of 30 per cent compared to the 747. It also offers an enhanced passenger experience."

Kevin McAllister, president & CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, added: "British Airways is one of the most iconic international carriers, now in its 100th year of connecting the world with its impressive route network. We are honoured that British Airways has selected the 777X as part of its fleet for its next century. Together with the 787 Dreamliner, we are excited for the 777X to help British Airways build on its incredible legacy."

British Airways has been a customer of the 777 family since decades. Currently, the carrier is operating long-haul routes with a fleet of 46 B777-200s and 12 B777-300s. Last year, the airline committed to four more B777-300 aircraft via operating lease.

Boeing´s 777X aircraft is set to debut next month. The plane features new aerodynamical advantages and features a slightly wider cabin than current 777s. It is being powered by 787 Dreamliner technologies and features a new composite wing, which is foldable.

For the past years, the U.S.-American manufacturer has struggled to receive orders for its 777X. This order now brings the 777X backlog to 358 orders and commitments from only eight customers. The first delivery of a 777X is expected in 2020.

British Airways is the flag-carrier of England and operates with one Airbus A318, 42 A319s, 77 A320s, 21 A321s, 34 Boeing 747s, 58 B777s and 30 787s. Recently, the carrier introduced a new BOAC-retro scheme on one of its 747. Yesterday, an A319 received a special British European Airways livery.

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