Garuda Indonesia has penned a major new deal to revamp its single-aisle aircraft fleet.
The Indonesian national carrier has signed a purchase order for 50 new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, worth more than US$5 billion at list prices.
The order includes 46 new B737 MAX 8 aircraft, plus the conversion of four existing orders from the B737-800 to the new B737 MAX 8.
“The 737 MAX 8 represents a bright, efficient future for Garuda Indonesia,” said Emirsyah Satar, the airline’s chief executive officer. “This order helps continue our commitment to offer the people of Indonesia and Southeast Asia the most comfortable, most efficient air travel in the region.”
Garuda currently operates 77 B737s, equipped with between 156 and 162 seats. These are mainly used on the airline’s domestic and regional routes within Southeast Asia.
But the latest deal marks the airline’s first order for the B737 MAX – the new fuel-efficient version of the popular single-aisle aircraft. Incorporating new engines and a series of aerodynamic improvements, the MAX is billed as being 14% more fuel-efficient than the existing B737, as well as having “an 8% per seat operating cost advantage over the [Airbus] A320neo” – the aircraft’s main rival.
“The 737 MAX will be a great addition to the Garuda’s fleet,” said Dinesh Keskar, Boeing’s senior vice president for Asia Pacific & India sales. “It will build on the strong tradition of service that Garuda Indonesia has established with the 737 family. This order demonstrates Garuda’s trust in Boeing and a strong commitment to operate the most fuel-efficient single-aisle airplanes in the market today and in the future.”
The latest order continues Boeing’s recent successes in Indonesia. As well as its deals with Garuda, the US planemaker also received a 230-aircraft order from Lion Air in 2012, worth US$22.4bn.
Garuda now has outstanding orders for a series of new aircraft types, including regional ATR 72s and Bombardier CRJs, the short- and medium-haul B737s and long-range B777s and A330s.