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Ryanair, the largest low-cost carrier in Europe, has dropped the word ‘MAX’ from the exterior of one of its Boeing 737 MAX 200. Images posted to Twitter Sunday afternoon by a Renton-based aviation spotter, @AeroimagesChris, show the fifth Ryanair Boeing 737 MAX 200 to be built painted in Ryanair’s livery — without the MAX branding.

Ryanair, like many other airlines, indicates the aircraft type on the exterior of its planes just below the flight deck. The images posted to Twitter earlier today show the omission of the word ‘MAX’ on the exterior of the aircraft, which is now simply designated as a Boeing 737-8200.

Ryanair would be the first Boeing 737 MAX customer to drop the MAX title from its branding in the wake of the worldwide 737 MAX grounding.

Ryanair drops MAX branding from 737 MAX 200 replacing the title with Boeing 737-8200. (Photo by Woodys Aeroimages on Twitter @AeroimagesChris)
Ryanair drops MAX branding from 737 MAX 200 replacing the title with Boeing 737-8200. (Photo by Woodys Aeroimages on Twitter @AeroimagesChris)

Ryanair has 135 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft on order. The ultra-low-cost carrier is set to become the first operator of the Boeing 737 MAX 200 variation, a modified version of the Boeing 737 MAX 8. The MAX 200 was designed especially for airlines like Ryanair that operate densely-configured cabins.

As TPG‘s JT Genter reported, the aircraft could carry up to 200 passengers (hence the 200 name). Here’s a look at the seat map:

The first Boeing 737 MAX 200 rolled out of the factory in November 2018 and was expected to enter service with Ryanair in April 2019. However, due to the 737 MAX grounding, Ryanair has yet to take delivery of the 737 MAX 200.

Ryanair placed an order for 135 Boeing 737 MAX 200 aircraft. (Image courtesy of Boeing)

It is not yet known whether or not the removal of the MAX branding on the aircraft was a decision made by Boeing, Ryanair, or both.

The bigger question airlines will face once the Boeing 737 MAX is cleared to fly again will be how to convince passengers to get on board. Ryanair appears to have provided an early glimpse into what may be part of its strategy.

TPG has reached out to Boeing and Ryanair at this time and will update this post with any additional information.

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Featured image courtesy of Boeing

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