Oct 16, 2018: Kuwait Airways has given the Airbus A330neo program a fillip with plans to buy eight A330-800 widebodies by signing a purchase agreement (PA) with Airbus. The agreement was signed by Yousef Al-Jassim, Kuwait Airways chairman and Christian Scherer, Airbus chief commercial officer at Airbus headquarters in Toulouse.

Kuwait Airways chairman Yousef Al-Jassim said the aircraft would form part of the airline’s fleet expansion and growth plans. “We are confident that the A330-800 will support us to compete effectively on our expanding route network,” Al-Jassim said.

“Our relationship with Airbus extends beyond aircraft acquisitions and we look forward to further collaboration on technical fields.”

Should the purchase agreement be converted into a firm order, Kuwait Airways would be the sole airline customer for the A330-800. Deliveries are expected to begin in 2019 and run until 2026.

Kuwait Airways has also reduced its A350-900 order from 10 aircraft to five aircraft.

Hawaiian Airlines cancelled its order for six A330-800s in March 2018, leaving the A330-800 without any customers. There are two A330neo variants – the A330-800 is the replacement for the A330-200, while the A330-900 is the replacement for the larger A330-300. They are powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines and feature a new wing and new winglets similar to those on the A350XWB.

Airbus chief commercial officer Christian Scherer said the A330-800 would fit seamlessly into the Kuwait Airways fleet alongside its existing A350-900s and A320neos.

“We are delighted that Kuwait Airways has chosen the A330neo as a cornerstone of its future widebody fleet. The A330-800 with its unique efficiency and versatility will support the carrier’s ambition to develop its expanding long-haul network,” Scherer said.

Airbus has received 210 A330neo orders from 12 customers, as well as 14 orders from unidentified customers, as of September 30 2018. All orders are for the larger A330-900.

Rolls-Royce’s Trent 7000 engine is the latest member of the successful Rolls-Royce Trent engine family and the exclusive powerplant for the A330neo.

The Trent 7000 brings together more than 50 million flying hours of experience from the Trent 700, which powers the original version of the A330. It also combines architecture from the Trent 1000 TEN – the latest version of the Trent 1000 engine – and the latest technology from the Trent XWB.

John Kelly, senior vice president - Middle East and Africa, Civil Aerospace, Rolls-Royce said, “We warmly welcome this announcement by Kuwait Airways and look forward to continuing our long and established relationship with the airline.”

The 68-72,000lb thrust Trent 7000 will deliver a step change in performance and economics compared to the Trent 700. Benefitting from a bypass ratio double that of its predecessor, the Trent 7000 will improve specific fuel consumption by 10 percent, and will significantly reduce noise.

Read Full Article