IndiGo's international ambition: Orders 30 Airbus A350-900

In addition to the 30 Firm A350-900 order, IndiGo has Purchase Rights for an additional 70 Airbus A350 Family aircraft.

IndiGos international ambition: Orders 30 Airbus A350-900
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In a significant development in the Indian aviation industry, IndiGo, India’s largest airline by market share, has placed an order for 30 Airbus A350 wide-body aircraft. These aircraft are the Airbus A350-900 variant. IndiGo’s A350 fleet will be powered by the Rolls Royce Trent XWB engine, as the company has also made agreements with Rolls Royce for 60 Trent XWB engines.

In addition to the 30 Firm A350-900 order, IndiGo has Purchase Rights for an additional 70 Airbus A350 Family aircraft, based on its choice, according to the official release by the airline.

After placing the order for the A350 aircraft, IndiGo has now become the second operator of the Airbus A350 in the Indian market, following the national flag carrier Air India. Last year, Air India initially ordered 34 Airbus A350-1000 variants and 6 Airbus A350-900 variants. However, the airline later adjusted its order, evenly distributing the number of orders between the A350 variants. Consequently, the flag carrier now has 20 Airbus A350-900 and 20 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft on order. Out of the 20 Airbus A350-900 aircraft, 4 have already been delivered.

The exact configuration of the IndiGo’s A350 aircraft will be decided at a later stage, and the deliveries are expected to start from 2027, mentions the official release.

Currently, IndiGo operates over 350 aircraft. Last year, in June 2023, IndiGo placed the largest-ever single aircraft order by any airline for 500 aircraft with Airbus. With that, the outstanding orderbook of A320 Family aircraft stands at almost 1,000 aircraft which are yet to be delivered well into the next decade. This IndiGo order book comprises a mix of A320NEO, A321NEO, and A321XLR aircraft, the release added.

It will not be the first time experience for IndiGo to operate a wide-body aircraft, as the Indian low-cost carrier is already operating two Boeing 777-300ER aircraft which are on wet-lease from Turkish Airlines and the airline has deployed these two aircraft on the Delhi-Istanbul route and Mumbai-Istanbul route.

The Airbus A350-900 will also provide additional cargo space, as the Cargo Lower Deck 3 (LD3) capacity underneath can accommodate 36 units. An LD3 is a standardised unit load device (ULD) container commonly utilised on wide-body aircraft. Additionally, the maximum number of pallets that can fit under the floor of an Airbus A350-900 cargo hold is 11.

“Today’s historic moment marks a new chapter for IndiGo and will further shape the future of the airline and for Indian aviation at the same time. For IndiGo, after successfully pioneering the Indian skies with an unprecedented journey, its fleet of 30 Airbus A350-900 aircraft will allow IndiGo to embark on its next phase of becoming one of the leading global aviation players. At IndiGo, we take pride in being India’s preferred airline and for offering connectivity to our customers, in and with India. This reaffirms IndiGo’s belief in, and commitment to, the growth of India, and in our strategic partnership with Airbus,” says Pieter Elbers, CEO of IndiGo.

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