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International Airlines Group has signed a letter of intent with Boeing for 200 Boeing 737 aircraft to join its fleet.
The deal is subject to formal agreement.
The mix of 737-8 and 737-10 aircraft would be delivered between 2023 and 2027 and would be powered by CFM Leap engines.
It is anticipated that the aircraft would be used by a number of the group’s airlines including Vueling, Level and British Airways at London Gatwick airport.
The deal is a long-term vote of confidence in the plane, which is currently grounded following crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia.
Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: “We’re very pleased to sign this letter of intent with Boeing and are certain that these aircraft will be a great addition to IAG’s short-haul fleet.
“We have every confidence in Boeing and expect that the aircraft will make a successful return to service in the coming months having received approval from the regulators”.
The list price is approximately US$117 million for the Boeing 737-8 and US$131 million for the 737-10.
The list price is the sum of the airframe list price, engine option list price and the price of optional features against which price concessions are made.
However, IAG will have negotiated a substantial discount from the list price.
IAG is the parent company of Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia, Vueling and Level and flies more than 113 million passengers a year combined.
The group has been a long-time operator of Boeing twin-aisle airplanes.
Earlier this year, IAG group committed to and finalized a major order for Boeing’s newest long-haul model, the 777X, to complement its fleet of current-generation 777s and new 787 Dreamliners.
In the single-aisle segment, IAG and its affiliates used to operate Classic 737 aircraft.
Today, its fleet is almost exclusively Airbus A320 family aircraft.
In selecting the 737 Max, IAG said it will fly a combination of the 737 MAX 8, which seats up to 178 passengers in a two-class configuration, and the larger 737 Max 10 jet, which can accommodate as many as 230 passengers.
The airline did not disclose a specific split between the two Max models.
“We are truly honoured and humbled by the leadership at International Airlines Group for placing their trust and confidence in the 737 Max and, ultimately, in the people of Boeing and our deep commitment to quality and safety above all else,” said Boeing Commercial Airplanes president, Kevin McAllister.
“We are delighted that the IAG team recognised the superior qualities of the 737 Max and has indicated an intention to return to the Boeing 737 family.
“We look forward to building on our long-standing partnership with IAG for many years to come.”