A landmark celebration for Airbus today. The company delivering the first U.S. assembled A321 next engine option aircraft (NEO) to Hawaiian Airlines.
Jon Snook, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Hawaiian Airlines, says the A321 is a game changing aircraft. Back in February, Airbus suspended delivery of the plane after discovering problems stemmed from engineering change. But, despite the delay, Snook says everyone is excited for Airbus' delivery to the big island.
"They say all good things come to those who wait and I think they really refined this product so it's a terrific aircraft now. The aircraft we have already on the property, we have three of these already from different places, is operating almost flawlessly. So, we're very excited about both its performance and its fuel efficiency," Snook said.
Bob Lekites, Executive Vice President-Customers, Airbus Americas said, “Airbus understands the challenging airline marketplace and has continued to stay on the cutting-edge of developing and producing aircraft that exceed industry standards in safety, efficiency and reliability. Hawaiian has recognized the Airbus commitment to innovation and we could not be more proud to deliver on this promise to them with our first U.S.-manufactured A321 NEO aircraft.”
Hawaiian currently offers daily non-stop A321neo flights from Portland and Long Beach to Honolulu. The carrier will announce additional A321neo routes between the U.S. West Coast and the Hawaiian Islands as it welcomes a total of 18 aircraft through 2020.
Offering the lowest operating costs in its class, the A321 NEO operates 15 percent more efficiently than its A321 CEO predecessor and by 2020 will operate at 20 percent efficiency.
The plan was named "Wili Wili" which is a native plant of Hawaii.
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