Here’s Your First Look at Airbus’s Newest Jet
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
For years, Airbus has been updating some of its most popular aircraft to make them more fuel efficient and extend their range. More specifically, the aerospace giant has been working with engine manufacturers to make jets burn less fuel, it has redesigned wings and generally made planes lighter.
The modernized version of its best seller, the single-aisle A320 series, is called the neo (for New Engine Option) and has been coming hot off the production line since early 2016. It’s already in operation for multiple carriers worldwide. In the US, you can fly it on Spirit.
Thursday, Airbus revealed yet another specialized version, the A321neo ACF — the alphabet soup is a bit much, but ACF stands for Airbus Cabin Flex. It’s a more fuel-efficient, longer-range version of the stretched A321, and it allows a more customizable cabin configuration. Keen eyed AvGeeks will notice that besides a sleek new “bandit mask” around the cockpit windows, borrowed from the A350, it doesn’t have four main doors, unlike all other A321s. It also has two overwing emergency exits, which other A321s lack. That configuration allows for more seats, as many as 240 compared to most A321s today, which seat 200 or slightly more.
The ACF will become the standard base for A321neos beginning in 2020. Airbus shared the first image of the jet Thursday on its Instagram account, sightly mislabeling it as the A321neoLR, the true long range version which hasn’t actually been built yet.
Revealing our new #A321LR – Long Range – to the world! The aircraft’s livery depicts two iconic destinations that can be linked by the A321LR, Paris and New-York, highlighting the true long range capability of the aircraft (up to 4000NM) ✈️ #airbus #airbuslovers #a321 #plane #instaplane #aviation #instaaviation #planephotography #newairplane #avgeek #aviationgeek
A post shared by Airbus (@airbus) on
The A321neo ACF will in fact be the base for the much anticipated LR which, according to Airbus, will extend the A321neo’s range to over 4,500 miles (4,000 nautical miles.) That extra range means the aircraft can operate overseas flights from the US without sacrificing performance and passenger capacity. And according to Airbus’ calculations, the A321LR will outperform its most direct competition — the 737 MAX — by some 30 percent.
You’ll notice they even call out this significant capability with a special livery, demonstrating the aircraft’s ability to connect New York to Paris nonstop. Airbus hopes this LR iteration of the ACF — itself an update of their hugely successful A320 series aircraft, will bridge the gap in the transatlantic market that more and more resembles its transpacific counterpart: Smaller planes connecting cities that may have otherwise required a transfer. And, as US airlines seek to replace the aging Boeing 757, the A321LR may be their best bet at a single-aisle long-haul workhorse (at least until Boeing unveils its own “middle of market” plane). As of right now, several airlines have ordered the type, including Norwegian, Air Transat and possibly JetBlue. The airplane is scheduled for delivery by the end of 2018.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
- Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.