Virgin goes for the MAX

Virgin Australia has announced an order for 23 Boeing 737-8 MAXes. (Boeing)

Virgin Australia has announced that it has placed an order for 23 Boeing 737-8 MAXes and four options, with the aircraft to be delivered from 2019 to 2021.

“The Boeing 737 has formed a critical part of the Virgin Australia fleet over the past decade thanks to its reliability, comfort and fuel efficiency” says Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti. “The Boeing 737 MAX will build on this, enabling us to achieve strong on time performance and maintain our low cost base.”

Virgin says that it is delaying delivery of some 737-800s until after 2016 and will now take 31 new aircraft between 2013 and 2016.

The airline also said that it expects to dispose of all of its 737-700s by the end of 2013.

Mr Borghetti added that the airline will “continue to review its fleet strategy to ensure we align fit-for-purpose aircraft to markets and maintain maximum flexibility in capacity management.”

The order is a boost for Boeing, which has been keen to secure orders for the MAX from existing 737 operators, despite some placing orders for the competing A320 neo.

Comments

  1. prutten82 says

    Smart strategic move by Virgin Australia by countering the Qantas Group purchase of Airbus A320 NEOs with Boeing 737-8 MAXes.

  2. RH Hastings says

    We’ll see which of either the NEO or MAX performs better in fuel burn, but generally they should be close making other factors weigh higher on decision criterion. Maybe not a factor, but to me, the MAX looks better.

  3. Joel says

    Very disappointing that the Qantas Group has placed an order for the NEO rather than the MAX.

    Very good choice for VA

  4. NJP says

    When QF purchased A320’s for JQ they could argue ‘new airline, new fleet, new staff’ & therefore recruit ‘new’ staff on ‘new’ (read lower) contracts. What’s the chance QF do this with their mainline fleet when the NEO’s arrive & recruit new staff on new salaries? Hence not buying MAX’s which would be ‘same type’

  5. Muzza says

    NJP – You are spot on there! QF Group has so many A320’s coming I feel they will end up on mainline with JQ “agreements”