Boeing, American Airlines sign major order for 47 787 Dreamliners, cancels 22 Airbus A350s

(Boeing illustration) (PRNewsfoto/Boeing)

Boeing and American Airlines have announced the world’s largest airline will more than double its 787 Dreamliner fleet with a new order for 47 of the super-efficient airplane plus 28 options. The 47 787s are valued at more than $12 billion at list prices and makes American Airlines the largest 787 customer in the Western Hemisphere.

American originally ordered 42 787 Dreamliners and has been using the airplanes’ tremendous fuel efficiency and superior passenger amenities to open new routes around the world, including Asia Pacific and Europe, and boost its network efficiency. While American still has more airplanes on the way from its initial order, the airline is buying the additional Dreamliners – 22 787-8s and 25 787-9s – to further modernize and expand its fleet.

Built with lightweight composite materials and powered by advanced engines, the Dreamliner family lowers operating costs by more than 20 percent compared to previous airplanes, and nearly 10 percent compared to today’s competing jets.

American becomes the latest airline to place a repeat order for the 787 Dreamliner. More than half of the program’s 71 customers have done so, which has helped the 787 program achieve more than 1,350 orders to date.

The 787-8 Dreamliner can fly 242 passengers up to 7,355 nautical miles (13,620 km) in a typical two-class configuration. The 787-9, a stretch of the 787-8, can fly 290 passengers up to 7,635 nautical miles.

About Boeing and American Airlines’ history

The relationship between Boeing and American Airlines spans over 80 years. Some of the key shared milestones include:

  • June 1936: American becomes the first to fly the Douglas DC-3 in commercial service
  • January 1959: American uses the Boeing 707 to offer the first coast-to-coast jet service
  • March 1961: American is the first in-service with the Boeing 720B
  • July 1971: The first DC-10 delivery goes to American
  • May 2015: American flies its first revenue flight with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner

American Airlines issued this statement:

American Airlines has announced an order for 47 new Boeing 787 widebody aircraft consisting of 22 787-8s scheduled to begin arriving in 2020 and 25 787-9s scheduled to begin arriving in 2023. The 787-8s will replace American’s Boeing 767-300s, while later 787-9 deliveries will replace Airbus A330-300s and older 777-200 widebody aircraft. The entire order of new 787s will be powered with General Electric’s GEnx-1B engines.

Airbus A330-300s to replaced with new Boeing 787-9s by 2021

Above Copyright Photo: The remaining Airbus A330-300s will now be replaced with new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners, not A350-900s. The last A330-300 will like likely leave the fleet by 2021.

To be replaced with new Boeing 787-9s, probably retired in 2021

Above Copyright Photo: The remaining Boeing 767-300 fleet will now be replaced with new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners. The last 767 is likely to be retired by 2021. American Airlines Boeing 767-323 ER WL N382AN (msn 25451) JFK (Jay Selman). Image: 402415.

American currently operates a fleet of 35 787s to destinations such as Tokyo, São Paulo and Paris. American will operate 89 787s once all aircraft under its previous order and the order announced here are delivered.

As part of the strategy to simplify its fleet, American agreed with Airbus to terminate its order for 22 A350s, which was originally placed by US Airways.

“We have two excellent partners in Boeing and Airbus and our relationship with both manufacturers goes back many years. Both offer specific aircraft that provide us with the right lift on specific missions across our global network,” said President Robert Isom. “This was a difficult decision between the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350 and A330neo and we thank both manufacturers for their aggressive efforts to earn more of American’s business. In the end, our goal to simplify our fleet made the 787 a more compelling choice.”

When compared to the aircraft they will replace, the 787 will provide the airline with improved fuel efficiency, lower maintenance costs, greater range, and an enhanced customer experience. Notably, the 787 earns American’s highest overall customer satisfaction scores among widebodies, as well as in the areas of seat comfort, carry-on storage space and in-flight entertainment.

As part of this order, American has also reached an agreement with Boeing to defer the delivery of 40 737 MAX aircraft previously scheduled to arrive between 2020 and 2022. The revised delivery schedule will better align with planned retirements of other narrowbody aircraft.

Top Image: Boeing.

American Airlines aircraft slide show (Airbus):

American Airlines aircraft slide show (Boeing):

Bottom Copyright Photo: American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner N831AA (msn 40652) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 941141.

American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner N831AA (msn 40652) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 941141.