Lufthansa has announced that it has leased 4 more Airbus A350-900s in order to “accelerate the modernisation of its long-haul fleet”. The decision comes as the German airline gradually pushes towards cleaner next-generation aircraft in both long and short-haul capacities.
The Lufthansa Group has signed leases for 4 more Airbus A350-900 aircraft with the lessors Avolon, SMBC Aviation Capital Ltd. and Goshawk. As a result, the Group’s A350 fleet will grow to 21 aircraft at the beginning of 2022.
These A350s are expected to enter service with Lufthansa’s core brand from the first half of 2022.
Dr. Detlef Kayser, Member of the Executive Board Deutsche Lufthansa AG, said:
The Airbus A350 is one of the most modern aircraft of our time. Extremely fuel-efficient, very quiet and much more economical than its predecessors. Our customers appreciate not only the sustainability but also the premium flight experience with this aircraft. The lease agreements allow us to remain flexible in fleet planning and make the most of exceptional market opportunities.
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As we all know, Lufthansa loves Airbus A350s. The airline has primarily used this aircraft to replace its ageing 4-engined Boeing B747-400/8 and Airbus A340-300/600 fleet. The acquisition of aircrafts like the A350 and A320neo is primarily driven by a goal of sustainability. The twin-engine Airbus A350-900 aircraft consumes only around 2.5 liters of kerosene per passenger per 100 kilometers flown. That is around 30% less than their predecessors, with a correspondingly positive impact on the carbon footprint.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the proportion of 4-engine aircraft in Lufthansa’s long-haul fleet was about 50% which is expected to fall below 15% by the middle of the decade. The A350s are primarily replacing the Airbus A340s. Meanwhile, the Boeing B747-8 will remain in the fleet for the foreseeable future.
Without these leased aircraft, the next Airbus A350 was due to be delivered in July 2023 to Lufthansa, which will be the first Airbus A350 to be delivered to Lufthansa with a first class cabin. The Frankfurt-based airline will re-activate 5 Airbus A340-600s to offer a First Class cabin option for passengers flying out of Munich in Summer 2022, but these could now be retired early with the four early 2022 deliveries.
Featured image by Lufthansa
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