AMSTELVEEN, September 6, 2002 å- KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will introduce major enhancements to passenger comforts and amenities on its new intercontinental fleet of Boeing 777-200ER aircraft due for delivery starting in October 2003. KLM will install so-called å‘lie-flatå’ seats, which recline to a horizontal position in its World Business Class cabins. The seats will be provided with a socket for laptop computers. Furthermore, all the seats on board the new fleet will be equipped with an interactive audio-video system, providing both World Business Class and Economy Class passengers with individual screens and control panels. The enhanced amenities are yet another step towards greater comfort and convenience for KLM passengers.
Paul Gregorowitsch, executive vice president heading KLM’s Commercial Organization, commented, “The Boeing 777 has already earned substantial appreciation from passengers with its spacious cabin. The cabin gives passengers a feeling of spaciousness, with more room to stand and walk about, and more stowage space for carry-ons. Along with the new ‘lie-flat’ seats in World Business Class and entertainment system in both classes, we will be setting new standards for passenger comfort on long-haul flights.”
The new ‘lie-flat’ seats recline to a comfortable, practically horizontal position at the press of a button, providing passengers with a 190 centimeter long sleeping surface. The seats are equipped with a lumbar support providing a massage effect on the lower back, an integrated 10.4 inch video screen with a separate control panel, a socket for laptop computers, a satellite telephone, adjustable headrest, and reading lamp. The new seats will be supplied by the Japanese-based Koito company, a major supplier of aircraft seating with a wide product range. Sinot Design Associates from Laren, the Netherlands, has adapted the basic Koito-design to KLM’s design standards.
KLM’s Boeing 777 Economy Class will be equipped with wider seats providing greater passenger comfort. The spacious cabin of the aircraft makes it possible to install wider seating in Economy Class. Economy Class passengers will each have their own individual video screen and control panel, and a satellite telephone. The 6.5 inch screen will be integrated into the back of each seat, and the control panel and telephone in the armrests. In every further respect, the seats will meet the same specifications as KLM’s current intercontinental Economy Class seating.
The new system provides a multi-lingual selection of feature films, music channels, computer games and inflight information. Since the system is fully interactive, passengers can decide for themselves when they wish to start up a specific film or listen to a specific audio program. KLM is now developing a new range of programs utilizing every facet offered by this interactive system.
The audio-video system will be supplied by Japan-based Matsushita Avionics Systems Corporation, market leader in inflight entertainment systems.
Between October 2003 and mid-2005, KLM will take delivery of ten new Boeing 777-200ER aircraft, replacing the airline’s current ten Boeing 747-300 and two of its MD-11 aircraft. The 777s will be operated on long-haul intercontinental routes, offering 35 World Business Class seats and 292 Economy Class seats, a total of 327.