Icelandair is latest Airbus customer with first order and leasing plans

Icelandair, the main Icelandic airline based in Keflavik, has placed a firm order for 13 Airbus A321XLR aircraft.

The order makes Icelandair a new Airbus customer. The airline is also planning to lease four A321LRs.

With its extra long range, the A321XLR will allow Icelandair to seize new market opportunities.

The aircraft will also enable the airline to reduce its operating costs and support its sustainability targets.

Bogi Nils Bogason, Icelandair’s CEO, said: ”We are very pleased to announce that we have now finalised the purchase agreement with Airbus.

“The efficient A321XLR aircraft will further strengthen our business model, increase our flexibility and provide opportunities for future growth, as well as further support our sustainability efforts.”

Bogi added: “The first aircraft is scheduled for delivery in 2029, but we plan to have four Airbus aircraft in operation before summer of 2025 and have now secured the lease of new A321LR aircraft with our long term partner SMBC Aviation Capital.”

Christian Scherer, Airbus chief commercial officer and head of Airbus International, said: “We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Icelandair for placing their trust and confidence in Airbus.

“It fills us with immense pride to welcome Icelandair as a new Airbus customer. By harnessing the exceptional performance of the A321XLR, your airline is forging a path of sustainable growth with remarkable efficiency and a significant reduction in CO2 emissions.”

The A321XLR is the next evolutionary step from the A320neo (new engine option) which responds to market needs for even more range and payload, creating more value for airlines.

It will deliver an unprecedented Xtra Long Range of up to 4,700 nautical miles – 15% more range than the A321LR and with 30% lower fuel burn per seat compared with previous generation competitor aircraft, as well as reduced NOx emissions and noise.

For passengers, the A321XLR’s new Airspace cabin offers seats in all classes with the same high comfort as on a long-haul wide-body, with the low costs of a single-aisle aircraft.

By the end of May 2023, the A320neo family had accumulated more than 8,750 orders from 136 customers worldwide.

The Airbus wing-making plant at Broughton, near Chester, employs around 4,500 staff making wings for all the group’s commercial aircraft.