American Airlines outlines its upgraded fleet and interiors plans

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today has outlined its fleet plans and upgraded interiors plans.

Here is the full statement:

“American Airlines continues plans to enhance and modernize travel with today’s announcement of customer-pleasing interiors onboard its more than 200 new narrowbody deliveries from Airbus and Boeing – these are a part of the previously announced order for 460 new aircraft.

“We intend to be the only airline to offer a three-class service and the first to offer fully lie-flat First and Business Class seats on transcontinental flights with our Airbus A321 transcontinental aircraft,” said Virsab Vahidi, American’s Chief Commercial Officer. “By using the A321 aircraft with three classes of service and outfitted with fully lie-flat premium class seats, all-aisle access in First Class, and state-of-the-art amenities, we will be able to continue providing an industry-leading premium experience on transcontinental routes, while significantly reducing costs through improved fuel efficiency.”

As previously announced, American plans to take delivery of 130 current generation Airbus aircraft from the A321 and A319 variants and up to 100 Boeing 737-800s through 2017. American plans to configure some of the A321s for use on transcontinental flights and intends to use the remaining A321s, as well as all of the A319s and new Boeing 737-800s to retire aging aircraft in its existing fleet.

Designed in partnership with James Park Associates (JPA), the overall design, trim and finish of these aircraft will reflect the look and feel of the new American and will complement the interior design scheme of the airline’s highly anticipated Boeing 777-300 ERs and redesigned 777-200 ERs to provide customers with a more consistent experience between aircraft types.

In addition to modern interiors, these aircraft will also keep customers connected with inflight Wi-Fi throughout the aircraft; entertained with in-seat entertainment at every seat; and fully charged with individual 110-volt universal AC power outlets and USB jacks at every seat. Plus, Main Cabin Extra seating, installed on all new deliveries beginning in August 2012 on the Boeing 737-800, will offer the option of more legroom and priority boarding privileges.

All of these new deliveries also incorporate the latest improvements to reduce fuel burn which helps American continue on the path toward reducing its carbon footprint.

A321 Transcontinental

The First Class cabin (see below) will be outfitted with 10 fully lie-flat seats in a 1-1 configuration, giving every seat direct aisle access – a feature that no other domestic airline offers. Customers can individually adjust any component of the fully lie-flat seat, designed by Sicma, including the seat back, head rest and leg rest. The seats feature a large tray table and work surface and an individual storage unit for stowing personal items. Seat controls have a more intuitive design for optimum customer comfort and simplicity.

The Business Class cabin will be outfitted with 20 fully lie-flat seats, designed by BE, in a 2-2 configuration. In the Main Cabin the seats will be designed by Recaro and arranged in a 3-3 configuration. The option to enjoy more legroom is available with 36 Main Cabin Extra seats and the aircraft also offers 36 Main Cabin seats. More details about the Business Class and Main Cabin seats will be provided at a later date.

To ensure customers traveling from coast to coast have access to the latest in inflight entertainment, American plans to outfit the entire aircraft with seat-to-seat chat, live text news and weather updates, 3-D moving maps, airport maps, connecting gate information, and more.

For customers traveling in the premium class cabins, a complimentary inflight entertainment selection of up to 75 movies, more than 150 TV programs, more than 350 audio selections and up to 15 games will be available on a 15.4-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitor positioned in each seat. Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® headsets will be available.

In the Main Cabin, every seatback will have an 8.9-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitor with an assortment of movies, TV programs, games and audio selections.

American intends to take delivery of these aircraft beginning in November 2013 through 2014. The A321 transcontinental aircraft will replace American’s existing fleet of Boeing 767-200s and fly between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and San Francisco International Airport (SFO), and JFK and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

A321, A319 and Boeing 737-800

The remaining A321s, as well as all of the A319s and 100 Boeing 737-800 new deliveries, will enrich the inflight experience with modern technology and entertainment options for customers traveling throughout the United States.

American intends to replace its fleet of domestic Boeing 757-200s and DC-9-82/83s (MD-80s) with A321s, A319s and Boeing 737-800s – all with leather seats, Wi-Fi and in-seat inflight entertainment throughout the aircraft. These aircraft will have a two-class cabin configuration, Main Cabin Extra seating and 110-volt universal AC power outlets at every seat.

Similar to the innovative inflight entertainment capabilities of the A321 transcontinental aircraft, American also plans to give customers onboard these aircraft access to seat-to-seat chat, weather updates, 3-D moving maps, airport maps, connecting gate information and more.

For customers traveling in the First Class cabin, a complimentary inflight entertainment selection of up to 75 movies, more than 150 TV programs, more than 350 audio selections and up to 15 games will be available on a 12.1-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitor positioned in each seat. Customers in the Main Cabin will also enjoy an assortment of movies, TV programs, games and audio selections on 8.9-inch HD-capable touchscreen monitors in each seat.

These aircraft will be delivered beginning with the A319s in July 2013, followed by the Boeing 737-800s in October 2013 and the A321s in the second quarter of 2014. American is still evaluating the specific markets these aircraft will serve.

American’s new narrowbody deliveries are part of a series of investments the airline is making to renew its fleet and an integral piece of the plan to transform it into the youngest fleet among the major U.S. airlines in the next five years. For example, in May American announced plans to redesign its fleet of 777-200 ERs to offer fully lie-flat Business Class seats with all-aisle access, Main Cabin Extra seating, Wi-Fi and in-seat entertainment throughout the aircraft. American also announced plans to refresh up to half of its fleet of 767-300 ERs to include fully lie-flat Business Class seats with all-aisle access and Main Cabin Extra seating. American also has orders for 10 Boeing 777-300E Rs that are anticipated for delivery beginning later this year.

American’s fleet renewal efforts serve to modernize and enhance the fleet in order to emerge from the restructuring process a stronger, new American.”

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Boeing 737-823 N937AN departs from Los Angeles International Airport.

American Airlines: 

Bottom Copyright Photo: American Airlines. The Airbus A321 First Class Cabin. According to the airline, “When you travel between New York’s JFK and San Francisco International Airport, and between JFK and Los Angeles International Airport, you’ll appreciate that American plans to be the only carrier to offer you a three-class cabin, plus fully lie-flat First and Business Class seats including all-aisle access from every First Class seat on our Airbus A321 Transcontinental aircraft. These planes will also offer the option of four to six more inches of legroom with Main Cabin Extra seating.”