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Major new SAS order to harmonise fleet

SAS has opted to simplify its fleet, ordering 50 more Airbus A320neos with delivery starting next spring.

SAS has opted to order 50 more Airbus A320neo aircraft with delivery starting in spring 2019, enabling it to have, for the first time, a single-type short-haul fleet by 2023. The order is split between Airbus and lessors.

SAS already has a previous order for 30 A320neos, of which 17 are already in service. It now plans to take a further 35 A320neos plus five options from Airbus, plus 15 planes through declarations of intent with lessors.

The latter 15 aircraft will be the first to be delivered, up until 2021.

The order continues SAS’s efforts to harmonise its fleet, cutting its number of short-haul aircraft types from six in 2012 to only two now. The new order means SAS will have at least 80 Airbus A320neos in service in 2023.

“Just over one year ago, we started to phase into service brand new Airbus A320neos, and since then we have received a very positive response from our customers,” claims Rickard Gustafson, the airline’s president and CEO.

“We are also creating a single-type and more efficient fleet for the first time. Ordering 50 Airbus A320neos gives us access to the market’s most efficient aircraft, thereby enabling us to further improve our operational efficiency and to continue to reduce our climate-impacting emissions.”

Fuel burn
The A320neo has 15-20% lower jet-fuel consumption per seat kilometre compared to the aircraft SAS is now phasing out of traffic. The airline says that emissions can be further reduced through the use of biofuel – something it has committed itself to using more of in the future.

SAS says that the planes will be financed through a combination of finance leases, sale and leaseback, and cash flow generated by the airline’s operations.

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