Some reports in German media suggest that Ryanair could be about to place an order for 100 Airbus A320neos. The aircraft would reportedly go to subsidiary Lauda (formerly Laudamotion) which already operates the Airbus A320 family.
Some German media suggest that Ryanair has an interest in as many as 100 Airbus A320 family aircraft. If the rumor did pan out, that would put total orders by the airline group at 235 as the airline also has 135 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft on order, in addition to 100 options for the grounded aircraft. However, the story isn’t as simple as it seems, as other publications quote Ryanair as denying the claim.
What is being said?
The story regarding a possible Airbus order appears to originate at German publication Wirtschafts Woche. Ryanair insiders reportedly told the publication that there is a plan to expand Lauda’s fleet with up to 100 aircraft. WW adds that a Lauda spokesperson said: “We are currently in talks with Airbus for further fleet expansion”.
However, it doesn’t seem to be as clear-cut as that. A number of other German publications quoted Ryanair as denying the report. They state that a spokesperson for the Irish low-cost airline said the claims were “absolutely wrong”. Simple Flying has contacted Ryanair directly for comment.
Lauda’s Airbus history
Laudamotion was launched by Nikki Lauda with Airbus aircraft in 2018. At this point in time, Ryanair had only announced that it would purchase 24.9% of the airline. This rose to 75% in August of 2018 following receipt of approval. The low-cost airline giant then upped its stake to 100% in December of 2018.
As a result, the airline has always operated with its fleet of Airbus A320 family aircraft, despite the rest of the Ryanair group operating 737 aircraft. This is not the first time that rumors of an Airbus order for Lauda have surfaced. In fact, in March 2019 Simple Flying reported that an order for 100 A320 aircraft was on the table.
German language publication Kleine Zeitung states that Airbus was not happy giving the discounts that Ryanair was expecting. It states Michael O’Leary wanted 50% off of the list price. However, O’Leary is quoted as saying that Airbus had no space for orders for years.
The news comes at a time when Ryanair is having its own order problems with Boeing. The airline has placed an order for 135 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft with a further 100 options. However, while the delivery of the first aircraft was due in April last year, Boeing doesn’t expect the MAX to be recertified before mid-2020.
As a result, the Irish airline giant has been forced to cut its expansion plans, and close some bases. One Boeing 737 MAX due to go to the group has been spotted in the livery of Polish subsidiary Buzz.
Do you think Lauda will order more Airbus A320s, or should they switch to the Boeing 737 like the rest of the Ryanair group? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!