Posted by Sade Williams
Airbus announced the rebranding of the CSeries of aircraft it took control of last week from Bombardier, as JetBlue ordered 60 of the A220-300 jet.
The CSeries’ CS100 and CS300 are now the Airbus A220-100 and A220-300, covering the 100 to 150 seat range, aimed at thinner routes than the company’s larger single-aisle aircraft.
“Everyone at Airbus has been looking forward to this historic moment. Today, we are thrilled to welcome the A220 to the Airbus family and are honoured to see it wearing its new Airbus colours for the first time,” Airbus president of commercial aircraft Guillaume Faury said at the launch.
A report by Airwise.com says New York-based JetBlue is the first customer for the rebranded A220, signing an MoU for 60 firm orders for the larger 130-seat A220-300. The agreement includes options on a further 60 A220s.
Airbus said deliveries of JetBlue’s A220s will start in 2020, and if the options are taken up, the second batch would be delivered from 2025. All JetBlue’s A220s will be assembled at the Airbus Mobile, Alabama plant.
“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,” JetBlue EVP Steve Priest said.
“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.”
JetBlue will use the A220s to replace its fleet of 100-seat Embraer E190s.
Speaking of the move to the A220, Priest said “We expect a seamless transition, and we’ve worked with Airbus and Bombardier to build in maximum flexibility to the order book as market conditions shift over time.”
JetBlue will take delivery of the first five aircraft in 2020, and expects to start phasing out its E190s shortly after.
As part of the agreement, JetBlue also converted part of its A320neo-family order. It will now take 25 of the larger A321neos instead of A320neos and adjust the timing of deliveries.