American airline orders 85 Airbus aircraft as part of mammoth deal

American Airlines announced a massive order for new planes on Monday including 85 from Airbus.

The airline split the order for 260 new aircraft between Boeing, Airbus and Embraer in a move designed to meet growing travel demand and increase the airline’s supply of seats.

American Airlines added that it has placed options for up to 193 more planes over the next several years.

The airline and aircraft-makers did not disclose financial terms for the orders.

The package of orders includes 85 Boeing 737 Max 10s — a larger version of the Max that has not yet been certified by U.S. regulators.

Boeing is under increased scrutiny from the Federal Aviation Administration to fix problems in its manufacturing system, particularly since a panel blew off an Alaska Airlines Max 9 in January during a flight.

It also ordered 85 A321neo planes from Airbus, Boeing’s European rival. The A321 and Max 10 are about the same size.

The Texas-based airline also ordered 90 smaller E175 aircraft from Brazil’s Embraer.

The planes are all single-aisle, so-called narrow-body aircraft that American will use for flights within the United States and to nearby international destinations. In a presentation for analysts Monday, American called its short-haul network “the foundation of value for customers and investors.”

American CEO Robert Isom said the airline has invested heavily in the last decade to modernize and simplify its fleet, which is already the largest among U.S. carriers.

“These orders will continue to fuel our fleet with newer, more efficient aircraft so we can continue to deliver the best network and record-setting operational reliability for our customers,” Isom said in a statement.

The announcement means that American now has orders for 440 planes, some of which aren’t scheduled to be delivered until the next decade.

Airbus employs over 2,000 people at its factory in Filton near Bristol and several thousand people in the North West near Chester.