CHICAGO, June 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines (NYSE: UAL) today announced an order with Airbus for new A350-1000 aircraft. The agreement converts United's existing order for 25 A350-900s into A350-1000s and adds 10 firm orders for A350-1000s, giving the airline a total order of 35 aircraft. The increased seating capacity of the A350-1000 will enable United to replace older, less efficient aircraft currently serving long-range, high-demand markets. United expects delivery starting in 2018.
"We look forward to taking delivery of the A350-1000," said Jeff Smisek, United's chairman, president and CEO. "This is a modern, fuel-efficient and advanced-technology aircraft that our customers and co-workers will enjoy flying. It will be a great addition to our fleet, and will allow us to meet demand on larger, long-haul markets in our world-leading network."
A rendering of the A350-1000 is available for download here.
The A350-1000 in United's fleet
The A350-1000 is the largest member of the A350 WXB family and uses advanced materials including composites, titanium and aluminum alloys combined with the latest engine technology to make it lighter and more fuel efficient. The aircraft will consume approximately 20 percent less fuel per seat than the large widebody aircraft it will replace. It is powered by new-generation Rolls-Royce Trent engines. The cabin will offer an improved customer experience with more headroom, wider panoramic windows and more overhead storage space.
"Less than a week after the success of the A350 XWB's first flight, we see that demand for the new aircraft continues to grow, especially for the larger -1000 model. Airbus is proud to have United Airlines on board the exciting A350 program in such a significant way," said Fabrice Bregier, Airbus President and CEO.
The Airbus order supports United's commitment to improve the overall efficiency of its fleet. On Tuesday, the airline announced an order for 10 Boeing 787-10 aircraft and conversion of 10 existing 787 orders to the -10 variant, making United's total Dreamliner order book 65. In July of last year, United announced a narrowbody order for 100 Boeing 737 MAX 9 aircraft and 50 Boeing 737-900ER aircraft. The airline is also modernizing its United Express fleet by adding seventy 76-seat Embraer aircraft that will be operated by regional partners.
United Airlines and United Express operate an average of 5,446 flights a day to more than 370 airports across six continents. In 2012, United and United Express carried more passenger traffic than any other airline in the world and operated nearly two million flights carrying 140 million customers. United is investing in upgrading its onboard products and now offers more flat-bed seats in its premium cabins and more extra-legroom economy-class seating than any airline in North America. In 2013, United became the first U.S.-based international carrier to offer satellite-based Wi-Fi on long-haul overseas routes. The airline also features DIRECTV® on 200 aircraft, offering customers more live television access than any other airline in the world. United operates nearly 700 mainline aircraft and has made large-scale investments in its fleet. In 2013, United will continue to modernize its fleet by taking delivery of more than two dozen new Boeing aircraft. The company expanded its industry-leading global route network in 2012, launching nine new international and 18 new domestic routes. Business Traveler magazine awarded United Best Airline for North American Travel for 2012, and readers of Global Traveler magazine have voted United's MileagePlus program the best frequent flyer program for nine consecutive years. According to the 4th annual Switchfly Reward Seat Availability Survey published by IdeaWorksCompany in May 2013, United has the most saver-style award-seat availability among the largest U.S. global airlines. United is a founding member of Star Alliance, which provides service to 194 countries via 27 member airlines. More than 85,000 United employees reside in every U.S. state and in countries around the world. For more information, visit united.com or follow United on Twitter and Facebook. The common stock of United's parent, United Continental Holdings, Inc., is traded on the NYSE under the symbol UAL.
SOURCE United Airlines