Boeing has announced provisional orders for 95 new 737 MAX-8 airliners from a pair of leasing companies, as the US planemaker’s upgraded narrowbody continued a strong showing at the Farnborough Airshow.
The deals, which had been flagged in advance of the show, included commitments for 75 aircraft from GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) and 20 aircraft from Kuwaiti company ALAFCO. GECAS, the aircraft leasing and financing arm of General Electric, also committed to buy 25 Next-Generation 737-800s. Together, the deals are worth more than $11 billion at list prices
Los Angeles-based Air Lease Corporation announced a firm order for 75 737 MAXs earlier at the airshow, while Virgin Australia unveiled an order for 23 737 MAX-8s earlier this month.
Boeing has also unveiled new performance projections for the re-engined 737 MAX, saying the jet will offer a maximum range of more than 3500 nm (6482 km), an increase of between 400-540nm over current generation 737s.
“This will allow our customers the flexibility to open up new markets,” said Joe Ozimek, vice president of 737 MAX product marketing. “737 customers today enjoy a range advantage over the competition and now they’ll have even more benefit with the 737 MAX.”
Boeing also claimed the 737 MAX will be more structurally efficient than its future competitor, the Airbus A320neo, with a lower operating empty weight but a higher maximum takeoff weight. That will translate into lower maintenance costs and an 8 per cent per-seat operating cost advantage over the A320neo, Boeing claimed.
Boeing said the 737 MAX remains on target for deliveries beginning in 2017, two years behind the A320neo.