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Airbus rolls out first A320neo

written by WOFA | July 2, 2014

A320_NEO_REVEAL_01Airbus has completed assembly of its first A320neo after the aircraft was painted in Airbus corporate colours and its Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines were fitted.

Airbus says flight testing of the A320neo will commence in September, ahead of entry into service planned for the fourth quarter of 2015.

The neo – new engine option – is offered with either PW1100G geared turbofans or CFM’s new LEAP-1A engines – which together with ‘Sharklet’ winglets promise a 15 per cent reduction in fuel consumption over the standard equivalent A320 Family aircraft.

Airbus holds “nearly” 2,700 orders for neo aircraft, including 78 currently on order with the Qantas Group for Jetstar (Qantas has announced plans to “restructure” its A320 order book, but has not yet revealed if this effects its neo orders) and 13 for Air New Zealand.




  • Brendan


    Qantas might be able to replace some of the older 737’s with these aircraft on order. Some of the older 738’s are getting close to 15 years old and I’m sure the got the orders at a very cheap rate. At the moment I don’t think jetstar could take them seeing that the have aircraft sitting idle anyway.

  • Damian


    Brendan if that was to happen it would still technically be Jetstar taking delivery….but painted in QF colours operating QF flights…with a little “Operated by Jetstar” sticker somewhere inconspicuous….

  • Brendan


    Is that the same way as cobham aviation, formally national jet systems operate 717’s on behalf of Qantas.
    Or is it like, Qantas buying a330’s, transferring them to jetstar international with Qantas keeping the repayment costs and jetstar taking the revenue.
    Or, is it like Qantas & jetstar doing same route (ie Brisbane to cairns ). The when jetstar only fills half the seats, it then cancels the flight, transfers the passengers on the QF flight, QF incurs the costs and jetstar has the revenue.
    Just saying, Qantas might be get some new aircraft but let jetstar incur the costs.
    They say Qantas cost base is around 20 percent higher than virgin Australia holdings. I have a fairly good idea where the costs are coming from. A good bean counter could change those costs around.

  • Anthony


    I love the suspicious accounting concepts noted above. As a Chartered Accountant, the Qantas Group is audited and the audits would and do haul over revenue and cost allocations to ensure they are correctly recorded in the right entities. Any of the concepts noted above are illegal and criminal and this is certainly not occurring.

    The truth is Qantas is a legacy government airline with 90 years of a high cost base that worked well in the 80/90s.

    A new airline created newer and cheaper way (aka Virgin) to deliver the same service.

    Virgin was a low cost carrier transformed into what some would call a premium airline (in my view as a frequent traveller, Virgin is not premium, its just the cocky upstart riding on the wave of unlimited funds of strategic hub carriers in Singapore and Middle East).

    There is only way way to fix the Qantas issues coming from an accountant/corporate financier and they are:
    1) Get those A380 off the 18 hour on the ground stints in LA (not fixed) Heathrow (fixed)

    2) Transfer 1x A380 release off the ground in LA for a Sydney – Johannesburg via Perth technical spot and load on extra passengers (steal the 200x passengers a day off the South African A340 service) aka focus where the Middle East carriers can not threaten you! retire that old full burning 747 off the current SYD – JHB and add over $100m in extra revenue that is all cream and profit

    3) Deck out some 737-800 in full international lie flat business class/premium/economy and re-start a 2-3x daily PER-Singapore. Frequency is the key on this route. 1 flight a day down from 2 could not compete with Singapore at 4x a day. I am not sure a PER-HKG 737 would make the distance, if it did, run an overnight services to connect into China. The Perth business community likes the overnight HKG flight landing early morning to start work fresh off a good sleep

    4) These 737 noted above could possibly be those spare Jetstar A320 … just like Cobham. Jetstar owned/operated, painted in Qantas colours and product with Qantas leasing the aircraft off a Jetstar. this translates into lower operating costs away from the legacy airline

    5) Introduce leased Jetstar operated A320 into domestic noted above, painted in Qantas colours, uniforms and product. My suggestion is the entire Qantas 737 fleet is transferred to be operated by Jetstar or replace the 737 with A320neo or 737Max

    6) Remove older A330-300/200 and replace with 787-9 (more fuel efficient)

    7) 737-800 – phase out older aircraft and replace with A320neo (surplus Jetstar aircraft?) or 737MAX

    8) 767 are on their way out, but maybe accelerate further and reduce the capacity in domestic which clearly there is a surplus

    9) Create a separate Qantas Club in Perth, where dress standards apply to weed out those FIFO workers who get granted Gold or Platinum

    10) Open up the Qantas Club to non-members for a once off visit fee, such as $50. I have many friends who fly economy for work due to business class flight bans. Their employers will easily pay $50 for a once off Qantas Club visit and other passengers who would not use the club enough to justify a membership would be more than happy to pay a once off visit fee such as my parents.

    11) Revenue generated from once off visitation fees from the Qantas Club can be used to upgrade food offering to a full service hot meal

    12) introduce international premium economy on Perth – east coast. Businesses are downgrading employees from Business Class to Economy Class, but Premium Economy is just within budget scope to snare a run. Much better to feed them into Premium Economy at 40-50% higher fare for a seat that is max 30% larger. Equates to per seat revenue expansion

    13) retire all remaining 747 and replace with 787-9. Focus on margins rather than capacity. It may be a wise business decision to reduce capacity by 30% from a 747 to 787-9, but lift airfares by 10%. Lift per seat margins, lower operating cost and higher revenue seat occupancy. this all translates into higher profits. (if other airlines and/or passengers want to hunt for the cheapest airfare and compromise comfort over a 10-15 hour transpacific flight, let them wave goodbye to you on boarding Delta as there is no point flying them at a low economic return).

  • Ben


    If QF were to move to the 320 then it would have to ditch the 737 entirely in a fairly short order like Easyjet did. You can’t do an Ansett and drag out your fleet replacement, it creates too much financial impost on the company operating multiple types that are, in effect, doing the same job. Given that they are becoming a large Airbus operator it could make some sense to move to the 320 when they have virtually gotten rid of the 744’s, 767’s and have the 330’s back from JQ. There would be a commensurate reduction in cross fleet training costs if they had 320, 330 and 380 (and potentially 350 if they ever wake up and select a big twin). They could also have a larger buying power if the entire group was on the 320. Ironically JQ is going to loose the cross type training efficiency as the 330 returns to mainline.

    Virgin group will face a similar decision now that they are looking at efficiencies with VARA included in the group as well as the large holding in Tigerair. Rationalising types only makes sense, as there are economies of scale to be gained. Although reading between the lines James Hogan may have already influenced that in the wide-body realm. However there is nothing stopping QF and EK collaborating on purchases (except that they have different engines in the 380’s and QF has no 777’s). Personally I still maintain that QF should admit they were wrong in selecting the 380 and should have long ago gone with the 777 and promptly arrange for EK to take their 380’s (even with the engine difference) in trade for some 777-300ER’s!

    Good bean counters? Have a look at Southwest, biggest fleet variation they have is the differential between various models of 737! Not to mention they do everything else as lean as possible. Results speak for themselves, they are the ONLY major US carrier not to have been through Chapter 11 and/or a merger! (Air Tran was an acquisition not a merger)

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