American air carrier Delta Air Lines boosted its order from the European aircraft manufacturer to 125 Airbus A321neo jets. The airline already had an order for 100 aircraft, to which it added 25 more jets powered by Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-JM engines, Airbus announced on April 23, 2021.
Delta placed its initial order in 2017. The airline is expecting to receive the first jet of the now-125-planes-strong order in the first half of 2022.
In addition to the expanded order, the airline also accelerated deliveries of Airbus widebodies ‒ two A350-900s and two A330-900neos ‒ to the second half of 2022.
Mahendra Nair, the Senior Vice President at Delta Air Lines, said that the A321neo order expansion would help the company to reduce its carbon footprint as well as increase the efficiency of the customer service.
While waiting for the new jets, the company works on planned retirements of older aircraft in its fleet. According to the Planespotters.com data, the air carrier currently operates the fleet consisting of 779 aircraft counting an average of 13.9 years in service.
“With our customers ready to reclaim the joy of travel, this agreement positions Delta for growth while accounting for the planned retirements of older narrowbody aircraft in our fleet. […] We thank Airbus for their steadfast partnership during the pandemic and look forward to working with them as we take delivery of the A321neo as well as our accelerated A350 and A330-900neo deliveries,” Nair was quoted in the Airbus statement.
According to Airbus, the recent order made by the airline brings the total number of the A321neo jets to nearly 3,500 aircraft with more than 500 planes already delivered to the customer airlines globally. The manufacturer counted that while providing the additional range of up to 500 nautical miles, the A320neo Family jets also cut the fuel amount per-seat by 20%.