Air Canada (ADH2) ordered six Airbus A321XLR extra-long-range aircraft as part of its network expansion strategy.
15 of the aircraft will be leased from Air Lease Corporation, five will be leased from AerCap, and six will be bought from Airbus, with options for 14 additional aircraft to be purchased between 2027 and 2030. Deliveries are expected to start by the beginning of 2024 and end by early 2027.
“The acquisition of the state-of-the-art Airbus A321XLR is an important element of this strategy and will drive our core priorities of elevating the customer experience, advancing our environmental goals, network expansion and increasing our overall cost efficiency,” Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada (ADH2) commented.
Air Canada (ADH2)’s A321XLRs will accommodate 182 passengers in a configuration of 14 lie-flat Air Canada Signature Class seats and 168 Economy Class seats. Canada’s flag carrier is yet to announce whether it will choose the CFM International LEAP-1A or the Pratt & Whitney PW1100G as the engine to power the A321XLR.
With a range of 4,700 nautical miles (8,700 kilometers), the A321XLR will allow Air Canada (ADH2) to operate non-stop flights across North America as well as transatlantic routes “pending Transport Canada approval for overseas operations”. It will replace a number of older, less-efficient aircraft and thus should “yield significant operational cost savings and environmental benefits”.
Unveiled during the June 2019 Paris Air Show, the A321XLR racked up 515 from 25 customers as of February 2022. It is set to enter commercial service with its launch customer Middle East Airlines in 2023.