The Cathay Pacific Group and CFM International have finalized an order for the advanced LEAP-1A engine to power the Group's 32 new Airbus A321neo aircraft. The engine order is valued at nearly US$1 billion at list price, with delivery scheduled from 2020.
The aircraft will be operated by Cathay Dragon, the regional carrier of the Group, replacing and modernizing its existing single-aisle fleet of 15 A320s and eight A321s, while supporting the airline's continued expansion in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Group has also signed a long-term Rate per Flight Hour (RPFH) maintenance agreement with CFM International. Under the terms of the agreement, CFM will guarantee maintenance costs on a dollar per engine flight hour basis.
"We are excited to have selected the LEAP-1A engine to power our incoming Airbus A321neo fleet," said Neil Glenn, Cathay Pacific Director of Engineering. "CFM International has an excellent reputation for the reliability and predictability of their engines, and with the LEAP-1A engine delivering on its promised efficiency, we look forward to entering into a new chapter in our relationship with them."
"We are obviously thrilled that Cathay Pacific has selected the LEAP-1A engine to power its new A321neo aircraft," said. Gaël Méheust, president and CEO of CFM International. "Although the CFM56-5C engines powered Cathay Pacific's Airbus A340 aircraft for 20 years before the aircraft's retirement earlier this year, this is the first time the airline has selected CFM engines for single-aisle aircraft. We appreciate the trust they have placed in us and look forward to bringing all of the benefits of the LEAP-1A engines to this new fleet."
The LEAP engine family has had an exceptional entry into commercial service with 18 customers currently operating more than 85 aircraft on four continents. Overall, the fleet has logged nearly 150,000 flight cycles and 300,000 flight hours while maintaining CFM's industry-leading reliability and the highest utilization rate in this thrust class.
The LEAP is providing operators a 15 percent improvement in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions compared to today's best CFM56 engine, along with dramatic reductions in engine noise. All this technology is focused on providing better utilization, including CFM's legendary reliability out of the box; greater asset availability; enhanced time on wing margins to help keep maintenance costs low; and minimized maintenance actions, all supported by sophisticated analytics that enable CFM to provide tailored, predictive maintenance over the life of the product.