China Aircraft Leasing Places Huge A321neo Order

Yesterday, China Aircraft Leasing Corporation (CALC) announced a big new order for the Airbus A321neo. The Chinese leasing company has ordered an additional 40 Airbus A321neos, bringing its current total order for the type to 66 aircraft.

Airbus Industrie A321neo D-AVXA (1)
China Aircraft Leasing Company has placed a big new order for the Airbus A321neo. Photo: BriYYZ via Flickr

On Thursday, Simple Flying reported on Xiamen Airlines’ interest in the Airbus A321neo, which marked a big step for the Chinese carrier which has historically operated a Boeing-only fleet.

Yesterday brought more good news for Airbus as it secured another big order for the Airbus A321neo from a different Chinese company – China Aircraft Leasing Corporation.

China Aircraft Leasing Company’s order

According to a press release published by Airbus, the manufacturer’s agreement with China Aircraft Leasing Corporation covers more than just a new order for Airbus A321neos.

In addition to the order of 40 Airbus A321neos which has just been agreed, CALC will also be converting 15 of its Airbus A320neo orders to the larger Airbus A321neo. When added to the order of 11 Airbus A321neos the company had already placed with Airbus, its total order for the type now sits at 66.

So far, China Aircraft Leasing Corporation has received just one Airbus A321neo. It will receive the remaining 65 aircraft in stages through until 2026.

Airbus A321neo
China Aircraft Leasing Corporation will receive its Airbus A321neos through until 2026. Photo: © Airbus

With two significant orders in as many days, Airbus has got 2020 off to a great start.

In particular, it looks like the Airbus A321neo has been the main focus of attention. As stated by Airbus in its recent press release, the Airbus A321neo is the longest-range aircraft in the A320 family.

With the Boeing 737 MAX out of action for the foreseeable future, it looks like airlines are turning to Airbus to expand their fleets going forward.

With Xiamen Airlines having just made its interest in 10 Airbus A321neos public, China Aircraft Leasing Company’s big new order for the type may well have been influenced by the news. As a lessor, China Aircraft Leasing Corporation’s buying decisions are determined almost exclusively by the demand of its customers.

Discussing the A321neo order, China Aircraft Leasing Corporation’s CEO, Mike Poon, said:

“We see enormous market appetite for this single-aisle aircraft with lower operational cost, and the order is in line with our portfolio strategy of investing in the most in-demand modern technology aircraft with unbeatable fuel efficiency.”

Airbus A321neo display at Paris Airshow 2017
The Airbus A321neo has proven very popular with airlines around the world. Photo: Clemens Vasters via Flickr

A loyal Airbus customer

In comparison to Xiamen Airlines, which is a Boeing operator through-and-through, China Aircraft Leasing Company’s big order for Airbus aircraft is not that much of a surprise.

In total, the company’s cumulative order total for Airbus aircraft now sits at more than 250 units of various types.

Given the Airbus A321neo consumes 20% less fuel than the ceo version of the type, as well as offering a 50% fuel reduction, it wouldn’t be surprising to see more and more airlines and lessors making the move away from Boeing in favor of Airbus.