On Thursday the 20th of February, SWISS will welcome its first Airbus A320neo. Here’s what to expect from the Lufthansa subsidiary’s new aircraft.
New addition to premium routes
SWISS is preparing for its new Airbus A320neo to enter into service. The first A320neo made its inaugural flight from the Airbus factory in Hamburg earlier this month and will be delivered to the airline’s hub at Zurich airport on Thursday this week.
As reported by Routesonline, it will begin flying on March 15 from Zurich on the airline’s services to Brussels, Hamburg, and Valencia. Form March 22, London Heathrow will be added to the schedule.
SWISS has ordered 17 A320neo jets in total, to be delivered from now until 2024. The aircraft are generally larger than their predecessor. It can carry more fuel, more passengers, and cover more ground at a quicker speed.
Quieter, fuel-efficient and more spacious
‘We are delighted that, in committing to these quieter and more efficient models of the tried-and-trusted Airbus A320 family, we can further advance the modernization of our European aircraft fleet’, said SWISS CEO Thomas Klühr in a press release announcing the airline’s investment.
Compared to the older A320s, the A320neo consumes around 20% less fuel per seat and kilometer. The ‘neo’ (while also being the Greek word for ‘new’) stands for ‘New Engine Option’, describing the most prominent feature of the new model. Its new engines, the Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW1000G-JM, are larger, more fuel-efficient, and quieter than previous models.
To further minimize its boisterousness, the aircraft will be fitted with noise-reducing vortex generators. This gives an A320neo an up to 50% smaller ‘noise-carpet’ than other comparable aircraft types. No doubt to the delight of Zurich Airport’s neighbors, as well as frequent fliers.
The cabin has also been given a wider girth compared to the older A320 with the addition of a new fairing. Other than being wider, the cabin has been given better pressurization, larger overhead compartments, noise reduction and LED lighting.
The delivery of the new aircraft plays into SWISS’ bid to reduce emissions and become more fuel-efficient. It is currently undergoing the largest fleet modernization in its history and has an average aircraft age of 9.5 years. This will be reduced further by the arrival of the new A320neo, making it one of the youngest fleets in Europe.
Another airline to receive a new A320neo this month was EgyptAir, and Aegean Airlines has also just revealed its new livery for the aircraft.
EuroBusiness as usual
The new aircraft will also feature SWISS’ new business class seats. Or rather, it is the same seats that will be in economy, only with a tad greater recline option. This is the same seat introduced by Lufthansa and Austrian airlines, and really the only difference to those in economy is that the middle seat will be kept empty. A tradition on continental short-haul that has, somewhat sarcastically, come to be dubbed ‘EuroBusiness’.
The schedule information in this article was originally published by Routesonline.