KLM Royal Dutch airlines have signed an Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus today to acquire six Airbus A330-200s and purchase rights on further 18 aircraft of this type. Delivery of the aircraft will begin in early 2005. In KLM’s layout the aircraft will seat around 250 passengers in a comfortable two-class-cabin. The engine selection has yet to be made.
Making the most of the A330-200’s impressive versatility, KLM will operate the aircraft from its hub in Amsterdam on its international route network. The A330-200’s flexibility and efficiency stem from its state-of-the-art technology, optimised wing design and the lowest fuel burn in its class. Together with low noise and emissions levels, these features also contribute to environmentally-friendly operations.
“In daily operations, the Airbus A330-200 has proven to be an aircraft providing excellent operational and commercial performance, with high levels of efficiency and flexibility, generating a high degree of passenger appreciation,” said KLM Chief Operating Officer Peter Hartman. “This aircraft type will also contribute to achieving our goal of minimising the impact of our operations on the human and natural environment in the vicinity of airports.”
Airbus’ A330-200 is renowned for being the most efficient aircraft in its class, combining the lowest operating costs with highly efficient cargo capabilities that enhance airline profitability through freight operations. The A330-200 also offers the most spacious cabin of any widebody jet in its category. Wider seats and wider aisles create a more enjoyable seating arrangement for passengers and state-of-the-art cabin systems help to provide a comfortable atmosphere that reflects the commitment to passenger comfort found in all Airbus aircraft, which are known worldwide to have the quietest cabin in the sky.
“I am delighted with KLM’s decision to select the A330-200. This agreement marks an important breakthrough for Airbus, since KLM was one of the major European airline not yet operating Airbus’ modern aircraft family,” said No‘l Forgeard, Airbus President and Chief Executive Officer. “This new mark of confidence in the A330-200 clearly shows its leadership in this segment,” he added.
KLM’s selection of the A330 further reinforces the remarkable success of the A330/A340 Family as the preferred medium to long-range aircraft among airlines worldwide. The A330/A340 Family has booked some 750 total orders from more than 60 customers to date and is cornering 76 per cent of the market against its direct competitors so far in 2002.
A leading aircraft manufacturer with the most modern and comprehensive product line on the market, Airbus is a global company with design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK, and Spain as well as subsidiaries in the U.S., China and Japan. Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is an EADS joint Company with BAE SYSTEMS.