PAL to Order 777X

Its Boeing Wide-bodies After All

March 25, 2013

Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) is planning to buy 20 next-generation Boeing 777X  as part of its re-fleeting programme for flights to the United States and Europe.

"It depends on the price. We are looking at the new Boeing 777X. We may buy 10 and, if it performs well, we'll exercise an option for 10 more," PAL President Ramon Ang told reporters on Monday.

Boeing will ask its Board of Directors at its next meeting in April for Authority to Offer (ATO) the proposed 777X to airlines and PAL is cuing up this early to secure early delivery schedule of the next generation jet expected to enter service in 2019.

The extended twinjet series will include a 353-seat 777-8LX, sized to succeed today's 777-300ER, and the 406-seat 777-9X, which opens up new territory in the higher-capacity long-range market. The larger model is provisionally slated to debut first, with the -8LX following around 2021.

PAL is looking to secure early orders for the bigger variant 777-9X.

"That's larger, can carry 400 passengers with longer range," Ang said. 

 The aircraft will be powered by General Electric's GE9X engines. GE is expected to run the first version of a new core for the GE9X as early as 2014.

"The new 777, they call it X because it's lightweight, has bigger wings, newer engine," Ang explains.

The next generation 777 is an ultra-long haul aircraft for Boeing that many have deemed killed the future need for the 747-8I as it is able to hold about as many passengers as the latest 747-8 can with the efficient use on only two engines.

Ang said the new Boeing orders will make PAL at the forefront of competition as it completes orders for 100 new jets in the next seven years as it reshapes and grows its business. PAL is hoping to fly the next generation jet in 2020.

Emirates, Lufthansa,  Singapore Airlines and British Airways are lining up as possible launch customer for the Boeing 777-900s.

No comments:

Post a Comment