American Airlines Forced To Refit Some Of Its Boeing 737s Again

Back in October, American Airlines resumed work on Project Oasis, which is an initiative to retrofit its fleet of 304 Boeing 737-800s and most of its 219 Airbus A321-200s. However, the airline has already taken a second look at the work completed on some of its 737s and is having another go at the fit.

American Airlines 737-800 aircraft
American Airlines has more work to do when it comes to retrofitting its 737-800 aircraft. Photo: Getty

What’s the issue?

View from the Wing reports that AA is making further tweaks to the first class in some of the already retrofitted 737s. This work is reported to be part of another program titled Project Kodiak.

The first class under the Project Oasis fitting resulted in an underwhelming finish. The seats are less cushioned with this design. Furthermore, they don’t have seat-back IFE screens and there is less legroom for passengers.

American 787-800
The airline is striving to be able to make the most out of the space on the jets. Photo: BriYYZ via Wikimedia Commons

What changes will be made?

As part of the rework, the airline wants to improve the legroom in the first row. Additionally, the under seat storage needs to be fixed, as images show that there isn’t quite enough space.

Along with this, there are improvements to be made when it comes to separating the first class and the main cabin. Finally, the carrier is working to add tablet holders and USB power to first class, which will be valued in this digital age.

737 American
There are improvements to be made following the previous retrofit. Photo: Fabrizio Gandolfo via Wikimedia Commons

The revised refits were rumored to start later on this year but it seems that American is now giving greater priority to the project. At least two planes have already been reported to in for rework.

Ongoing operation

According to the report, AA is surprisingly still retrofitting planes with Oasis first class models. Therefore, there is likely to be even more repeat retrofits needed to be made in the near future.

Before its merger with US Airways, AA’s 737-800s had 150 seats that then increased to 160. Project Oasis sought to increase the number of seats further to 172. This is why the legroom had been reduced as part of the refit. Ultimately, it had to make way for more seats to be squeezed in.

American paused Project Oasis during last year’s summer due to the grounding of the 737 MAX. However, the airline has managed to find a way to work around the grounding while also continuing to work on other aircraft.

Simple Flying reached out to American Airlines for comment on these retrofits. However, we did not hear back before publication. We will update the article with any further announcements.

What are your thoughts about this repeat retrofit? Let us know what you think in the comment section.