Malaysia Airlines has decided to utilize the new Airbus A350 for its Asia and London routes, starting as early as October 2017. The aircraft, also known as Airbus A350 XWB is a family of long-range, twin-engine wide-body jet airliners developed by Airbus.
The company has signed a long-term lease agreement for four new Airbus A350-900s with Air Lease Corporation (ALC). Additionally, two A350-900s and two A330-900neo (New Engine Option). It is not known whether the lease type is wet lease or dry lease.
Malaysia Airlines CEO, Christoph Mueller has expressed interest in acquiring more aircraft of that type to fulfill Malaysia Airlines’ future needs. The aircraft will be delivered between fourth quarter of 2017 and second quarter of 2018.
Thai AirAsia will see 2014 as one of its most dreadful years as it will record the biggest slump in profits in 10 years of history.
The ongoing political crises in Thailand were said to be the major contributing factor of the decline. The company said it will focus more on domestic markets rather than international ones because international market recorded huge drop in profit compared to domestic market.
It does not seem to affect much of AirAsia’s operation in other region though, as indicated y AirAsia’s desire to launch AirAsia Asean Pass, which allows users to pick flights throughout Asean (Southeast Asian) countries using pre-purchased credits. With 137 routes within AirAsia network for Asean alone, users will be spoilt for choice, according to a news report from 3sixty, AirAsia’s travel magazine.
The announcement came in shortly after previous news article by The Star Malaysia highlighting its scucess as Asia’s Best and World’s Best Low Cost Airline by Skytrax for six consecutive years (2009 to 2014).
A350XWB is a mid-size passenger airplane made by the famous European airplane manufacturer, Airbus. XWB in its name designation is eXtra-Wide Body, indicating its advancement in widebody airplane manufacturing.
A350XWB uses Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine, the largest turbofan engine (by fan diameter size) ever built for mass-produced aircraft. At 118 inch diameter, the fan diameter is even larger than those on A380 jumbo jet.
The only Malaysian airliner that placed firm order on A350XWB is AirAsia X, which sees the purchase of airplane fits well with their long-term strategy.
Recently Airbus A350XWB has made Malaysia as its final stop for its Asian tour. The airplane landed at KUL – KL International Airport (KLIA) and make a short turnaround flight the following day. Only selected crew members of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and press were invited as part of this program.
Since we are not able to be there for our much-cherished A350XWB, check out some tweets by @Airbus account: