Air Canada’s Brand New Airbus A220 Has Been Repainted Already

Last week Air Canada’s stunning new Airbus A220 livery was revealed. However, it has already been repainted due to an issue with the original paint job. The airline’s logo was incorrectly applied to the tail.

Air Canada, Airbus A220, logo mishap
Airbus mistakenly painted Air Canada’s logo back to front on its first A220. Photo: Air Canada

The Air Canada logo consists of a red maple leaf surrounded by a red circle. However, the red circle is not complete, with a break at the base of the maple leaf. Despite being paid an awful lot for the new aircraft, it seems that Airbus Canada had mistakenly applied the Air Canada logo to the aircraft back to front.

How was the mistake made?

While vinyl wraps can be applied to aircraft, such as this Boeing 787, aircraft are typically painted in layers. Usually base colors are painted onto the aircraft first, with more intricate details painted on top. Stencils can be used to complete details such as an airline’s name.

Air Canada, Airbus A220, logo mishap
Air Canada’s first Airbus A220 before the mistake was spotted. Photo: Airbus

The tails of aircraft are, however, sometimes supplied to the final assembly line already painted. Here’s why that sometimes happens. However, Airbus A220 aircraft are assembled with the tails unpainted. As such, it is down to the painters to apply the airline’s livery to the entire aircraft in the paint shop.


What happened?

While applying the Air Canada logo to the tail, Airbus’ painters made a subtle error. The logo was painted back to front. The error was much more subtle than when “Cathay Paciic” was painted onto the side of a Boeing 777. In fact, until it was pointed out by readers, Simple Flying didn’t spot the error.

Unlike some tails, the logo painted on the Air Canada tail is almost symmetrical. The only difference is where the maple leaf attaches to the circle surrounding it. It only attaches to one side of the circle. Unfortunately, the aircraft’s painters chose the wrong side.

Air Canada, Airbus A220, logo mishap
Spot the difference! – Photos: Air Canada | Airbus

Seemingly the error was so subtle that even Airbus’ press department didn’t realize. In fact, photos of the mistake were proudly published with a press release, before the mistake was spotted by those outside Airbus.

Already fixed

Thankfully, Airbus has already taken steps to repaint the aircraft for Air Canada, this time with the correct logo applied. An Airbus Canada representative told Simple Flying:

“Certain elements of one rondelle were executed incorrectly in painting the tail of Air Canada’s first A220 and this has already been rectified. There is no impact on the aircraft delivery schedule.”

Simple Flying has contacted Air Canada for comment.

Did you spot the error? Let us know in the comments!


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It is almost as funny as if Swiss Airlines were to complain that the airframe manufacturer painting their “cross” logo back to front (which they didn’t) ? It looks the same to the ordinary passenger. Air Canada is making a fuss over something quite trivial, but I guess some would say , they have to maintain their high standards. Who am I to argue?


Just as mistakes on coins or stamps, in my opinion leave the error would have been the better choice. The error makes the aircraft rare, unique. Spotters would be very proud to spot the aircraft with wrong painting. I would be very happy to fly with the Paciic unique aircraft!

Chris Loh

I agree! Call it a ‘special edition’ livery to celebrate the first A220! 😛

David C

What is funny is that on a previous article, someone noted that the logo was on backwards. I thought it was a smart a$$ making a joke. Turns out the poster was correct. Good on him, details count!

J. Abbott

Reliable Pratt & Whitney PW1524G engines with newly upgraded and ultra durable parts are the kind of details I care for more than paint errors. Besides, leave the errors in, they make for a unique, special aircraft. Who gets thrilled about clones upon clones?


Wouldn’t a few dabs of blue paint and red paint fix the problem?


“Despite being paid an awful lot for the new aircraft, it seems that Airbus Canada had mistakenly applied the Air Canada logo to the aircraft back to front”

What does the amount paid for the aircraft has to do with a mistake on the paint job? They are fixing it aren’t they? And if I remember correctly, AC had a pretty good deal on the C-series price wise and politically wise (Aveos suit was dropped in exchange)… That statement in the article is irrelevent…


Thankfully? Really? this was a life and death crisis? And only the Canadians would get it, so what if the leaf stem grows out of a circle one way or the other. Sheese. How about they just make it a circle? Nah, too easy. I could care less which way the US flag is on, actually its stupid the way its dictated to be backward to flight. Put a flat up on a ship. What do you see? Upwind in the upper left or upper right is the 13 colonies and the stars and stripes. But no, its backwards on… Read more »


What if someone misspelled the Walmart logo, then would it be an issue?


Bottom line, a company, ANY COMPANYS logo is there identity, be it an airline or bag if fertilizer!
It would have been a unique aircraft all in its own right, spotters would go nuts when they saw it!
But, time and money to get a logo design that sets you apart, IS THE BOTTOM LINE in business.


‘their identity’

John Picard

YES, I spotted the mis-paint immediately as I saw it.

Jimmy Wang

In sailing it’s bad luck to repaint over anything, you just put a new sticker or plaque over it. Would have been a good gimmick actually, I’m sure there were people out there that would have loved to specifically be on that plane