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Neo chapter for A320 with first delivery to Lufthansa

written by | January 21, 2016
A320neo LH deliv
Lufthansa’s first A320neo, pictured here wearing test registration D-AXAQ, will enter service as D-AINA on January 24. Note on the forward fuselage the ‘A320-200’ titles, and not ‘A320neo’. (Airbus)

Lufthansa has taken delivery of the first customer Airbus A320neo during a low-key ceremony in Hamburg on January 20, with plans to place the aircraft into service just days later on January 24.

That first revenue flight, planned for Frankfurt to Hamburg next Sunday, will also see the commercial debut of Pratt & Whitney’s PW1100G geared turbofan, one of two engine options available for the neo (or New Engine Option), alongside the CFM LEAP 1A, which should be certified on the A320neo later this year.

“Handing over the first A320neo to a world’s leading airline and long-standing Airbus customer, Lufthansa, is a truly great day for everyone at Airbus,” Fabrice Brégier, Airbus president and CEO said in a statement.


“This occasion marks a new step forward to delivering on our promises and meeting our industry’s goal for sustainable aviation. The A320neo embodies Airbus’s passion and commitment to deliver maximum value and efficiency to our customers through continuous innovations.”

Qatar Airways had been scheduled to be the first airline to take delivery of the neo, with a handover due before the end of 2015, but it declined to accept the aircraft while Pratt & Whitney developed a fix for the PW1100G, which currently has to idle for three minutes after start-up before the aircraft can taxi under its own power.

Both the PW1100G and LEAP 1A engine options should allow the A320neo to deliver an initial 15 per cent improvement in fuel burn over current A320s, with 20 per cent promised by 2020. It is that promise of efficiency that has seen airlines order the A320neo Family (which also includes the A319neo and A321neo) in its thousands. To date the neo order book stands at almost 4,500 aircraft, with Airbus planning to build 60 a month by mid-2019.


Locally Air New Zealand has 13 PW1100G-powered A320neo and A321neo aircraft on order due for delivery from 2017, while the Qantas Group has 99 (expected to comprise both the A320neo and A321neo) on order for Jetstar.

Lufthansa becomes launch customer of best-selling A320neo_ (1)_
Airbus president and CEO Fabrice Brégier, Deutsche Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr, and Pratt & Whitney president Robert Leduc at the A320neo delivery ceremony.

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  • Christopher Campbell


    Hopefully Qantas orders 100+ A320/21neos for Qantas and Jetstar narrow-body replacement

  • Craigy


    Considering the oldest B738 is only 13 years old, I don’t think we will see a replacement for another 8-10 years

  • Christopher Campbell


    However I feel it will be from around 2020-2022 they will start to replace them since Virgins 737MAX arriving in 2018

  • Brett


    The oldest is now actually just over 14 years old and with the first of 99 neo’s becoming available to the Qantas Group later this year; Qantas would be silly not to consider allocating some of latter half of this order to Qantas Domestic.

  • Raymond


    Reading this article will reveal that the Qantas Group has 99 (expected to comprise both the A320neo and A321neo) on order for Jetstar.

    Jetstar’s website informs us that the current fleet numbers are:

    53 Jetstar Airways (JQ)
    18 Jetstar Asia (3K)
    20 Jetstar Japan (GK)
    8 Jetstar Pacific (BL)

    6 Jetstar Airways (JQ)
    2 Jetstar Pacific (BL)

  • TSV


    How long do engines typically have to idle then? Say compared to the CFM-56-7B? I’ve never experienced a push back that was shorter than 3 minutes anyway….

  • Adrian


    Good to see Air NZ leading the way in Australasia again in terms of new fleet acquisitions….

  • Craigy


    Of course Air NZ had the luxury of a government bailout which enabled them to rebuild with government guarantees. Qantas have had to muddle through with an adversarial union movement hell bent on salary increases the airline could not afford or the new aircraft the engineers or pilots wanted to play with.

    And for years Air NZ have not had much competition particularly on US routes which has inflated their earnings. It will be interesting to see what impact the United and American additions make to Air NZ bottom line.

  • Trash Hauler


    IAE engines only need to be above minus 10deg oil temp before going above idle (straight after start in Australia). 3 mins is a long time after start to wait at idle- during a normal pushback the second engine finishes the start just as the tug disconnects. If the aircraft has enough idle
    thrust to move without powering up though it’s probably not a big deal.

  • Jay


    It will be a very sad day if Qantas puts A320’s into their domestic operations

  • Adrian


    and Qantas wasn’t handed the Australian market on a plate with the demise of Ansett?
    Everyone has had opportunities. Personally I don’t expect United’s and American’s introduction on North Maerican routes and NZ to make much of a dent if at all in Air NZ’s continued profit gains…

  • Alan


    Considering that NZ and UA are code sharing on UA’s new SFO-AKL flights adding to NZ’s existing flights, I doubt there are any concerns there.

    NZ have also added UA code share to its new flights to IAH and added a further new destination to EZE as a code share with AR, both using NZ equipment.

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