Another multi-billion dollar engine deal has been inked at Le Bourget, with Air Asia finalising a purchase for 200 LEAP-1A engines as powerplants for the airline’s 100 Airbus A321neo that it has on order. The airplane order and intent to purchase the engines were announced in July 2016. AirAsia is the single largest Airbus A320 operator in the world.
AirAsia will now also have its entire fleet of 808 LEAP-1A engines covered under the 20-year Rate-Per-Flight-Hour (RPFH) agreement, valuing the entirety of the order at a combined total value of US$23.1 billion U.S. (at list prices).
“We have centered our long-term growth and expansion strategy around the larger Airbus A321neo; choosing the right engine to power those airlines is critical to the success of that strategy. For us, the LEAP-1A continues to be the obvious choice. We have been operating it for nearly three years and are very happy. Our passengers like its quiet operation and we like the fuel efficiency and very high asset utilization it gives us."
AirAsia was an early LEAP customer and placed its initial order for 400 LEAP-1A engines to power A320neo aircraft in June 2011. It was the largest in aviation history at the time.
The Asian carrier took delivery of its first LEAP-powered A320neo in 2016 and currently operates 39 of the new type, in addition to 191 CFM56-5B-powered A320ceos.