14-Dec-2011 10:11 AM

Southwest Airlines orders 158 737 MAX and 58 737NGs; to become 737 MAX launch customer

Southwest Airlines signed (13-Dec-2011) an order with Boeing for 150 737 MAX aircraft, becoming the first customer to place a firm order for the 737 MAX and the programme launch customer, with initial delivery in 2017. Southwest also ordered an additional 58 737NG aircraft. These new orders join existing firm orders for 142 aircraft, bringing Southwest's total firm orders with Boeing to 350 for 2012 through 2022. These aircraft are intended to predominately serve as replacement aircraft as the airline continues the modernsation of its fleet. The 58 new 737NG firm orders include the exercise of 25 existing options. Southwest has substituted -800s for all -700 737NG deliveries scheduled for 2012 and 2013, in addition to a portion of its 2014 deliveries. For the 737 MAX order, Southwest has flexibility to accept MAX 7 or MAX 8 aircraft. The revised order book also includes 78 737NG options and 150 737 MAX options, bringing total option positions from 2014 through 2027 to 242. [more - original PR - Southwest Airlines] [more - CAPA Analysis]

The firm order is the largest in Boeing history both in dollar value – nearly USD19 billion at list prices – and the number of aircraft. With the Southwest order, 737 MAX orders and commitments have reached more than 900 aircraft from 13 customers. [more - original PR - Boeing]

Southwest Airlines also formally launched CFM International's LEAP-1B engine for the 737 MAX. Along with the CFM56-7BE engines for the 58 737-800s, the total engine order is valued at approximately USD4.7 billion at list price. In Nov-2011, Boeing and CFM announced the LEAP-1B will have a 68-inch fan. During 2012, the engine design will be optimised for the new aircraft. The engine will be the sole powerplant for the 737 MAX. [more - original PR - CFM International]

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