Meow! Air Astana gets leopard Embraer 190-E2
Kazakhstan’s Air Astana expanded its fleet by getting new Embraer of the E-Jet E2 series. On December 3, 2018, Air Astana press service reported receiving the first of five Embraer 190-E2, which is to replace current E190s.
Leasing period for Air Astana E190 aircraft expires in 2019, and new models are expected to bring more economical effectivity, as said by airline president, Peter Foster. E190-E2 is a new generation of Embraer E-Jets family. “The new aircraft has a high-aspect-ratio wing with improved aerodynamics, new on-board equipment and improved engines,” reported KGA.
The aircraft arrived in a very peculiar livery, portraying a snow leopard. "With this unusual livery, the airline intends to draw universal community attention to the problem of snow leopard extinction and raise environmental protection issues," the airline representatives told ATO. With only around 100 snow leopards left in Kazakhstan, the species is Red-book listed and always under extinction threat.
In February, 2018, the tiger livery Embraer E190-E2 first arrived in Kazakhstan for demonstration purposes.
Air Astana is the second airline to receive and operate E190-E2s, after the Norwegian Widerøe.