Airbus announces CSeries rebranding
When Airbus took a 50.01% stake in the Bombardier CSeries programme, no one knew what they were going to do with the aircraft. Would they keep it as a side programme? Would they adopt it into their family? Would they just close it down to protect the A320 family? Today, all that speculation comes to a close. Airbus has officially unveiled the A220-300 today – a new family, complementing the A320 success.
The process of renaming such a large asset isn’t easy, especially when it’s already in service with airlines around the world. Despite all the trouble that comes with such process, Airbus and its family have welcomed the new kid on the block in style.
Introducing the Airbus A220
The press conference leading up to the unveiling listed benefits the A220 family has to offer. The Unrivaled fuel efficiency, production security and supplier support is an excellent sales point for airlines looking at a jet of this category.
Before arriving in Toulouse, the aircraft entered a holding pattern, where it then commenced the name change. The aircraft performed a flyby for spectators and media before making an elegant approach, showing off its new name and paintjob. The standard Airbus celebration of raising a flag out the cockpit escape hatch was also followed.
The A220-300 landed directly from the painting at 12:25 am CEST wearing its new Airbus name and colours.
The A220 family comprises two models, the A220-100 and A220-300, formerly Bombardier Inc.’s C Series (CS100 and CS300). The aircraft are fully optimized for the 100 to 150 seat market and perfectly complement Airbus’ existing best-selling A320neo family.
Eric Schulz, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer, added:
“We are enthusiastic about selling the A220 thanks in particular to its technology which gives it a decisive edge in a very competitive market. I have received a lot of positive feedback from customers regarding the aircraft’s outstanding passenger experience, its lower fuel burn, lower weight and quieter engines. All these reasons contribute to my optimism that Airbus will support to make the A220 a great commercial success.”
Here are some pictures of the new A220-300 taken on-board today during a media tour.
So what does this mean for Airbus and customers?
The new aircraft family offers airlines a product that is proven, but now under the expert hands of engineers and managers with decades of aerospace experience. With this in mind, possible customers will feel more comfortable with the fact that the aircraft can and will be produced for many years to come. Increased production rates and cheaper acquisition costs will play a big role in the aircraft success. The new family name opens up opportunities for future aircraft developments.