United Airlines has placed a firm order for 50 Airbus A321XLR aircraft as it begins to phase out older models and launches an expansion of transatlantic routes from its key US hubs in Newark/New York and Washington DC. United plans to take delivery of the first A321XLR in 2024 and expects to begin international services with the aircraft in 2025.
Andrew Nocella, United’s executive vice president and chief commercial officer commented: “The new Airbus A321XLR aircraft is an ideal one-for-one replacement for the older, less-efficient aircraft currently operating between some of the most vital cities in our intercontinental network.
“In addition to strengthening our ability to fly more efficiently, the A321XLR opens potential new destinations to further develop our route network and provide customers with more options to travel the globe.”
The A321XLR is the next evolutionary step in the A320neo/A321neo family of aircraft. It will allow services from the US East Coast to a much larger selection of European destinations. The type will be operated by the same crew, powered by the same engines and have the same cabin as the A321neo, with more than 90% commonality. Combining the A321neo’s two rear centre fuel tanks into one adds fuel capacity and reduces structural weight. Other significant changes include structural reinforcements and modified landing gears for the increased MTOW, increased braking capability, higher tyre speed, and additional flap and slat configurations.
Original source - Airports International