After 4 Years, Airbus Finally Sells the Jet That Nobody Wanted
But Kuwait Airways is saving a dying program by ordering eight of the wide-body aircraft, it confirmed today.
After five months of negotiation, Kuwait's national carrier placed an order for the jets that retail at about $255 million. That puts the deal at more than $2 billion dollars, although it's likely Kuwait Airways received a discount on the aircraft since Airbus has had such trouble selling them. As part of the negotiation, Kuwait is reducing its A350-900 order from 10 jets to five.
The airline will start taking deliveries of the A330-800neo in March 2019 and will receive its last jet at the end of 2026.
The A330neo program is Airbus' attempt to revamp its popular A330 program with more fuel efficient aircraft that have a longer range. It's received 224 orders for the larger A330-900, which can seat 287 passengers, while the smaller -800 has a capacity of 257 passengers.
Once it starts flying all of its new aircraft, Kuwait Airways' fleet will consist of five A350-900s, eight A330-800neos, 15 Airbus A320neos and 10 Boeing 777-300ERs, The National reports.
“The A330-800 will seamlessly fit into our fleet expansion and growth plans... We are confident that the A330-800 will support us to compete effectively on our expanding route network," Yousef Al-Jassim, chairman of Kuwait Airways, said in a statement.