More shoulder room? Larger overhead bins? Better window views? All this is coming to an A320neo near you with the Airspace by Airbus cabin redesign. JetBlue will be the launch customer for the new layout; deliveries starting in 2020 will see the new cabin design take flight.
— Seth Miller (@WandrMe) September 26, 2017
The Airspace by Airbus concept launched 18 months ago with the A350 and A330neo as the first models to see the upgrades. The A320 version launched in June without a customer announced. With JetBlue now on board as the launch partner we can start to think about the more practical side of what it means for airlines and passengers.
The announcement of a launch customer allows the pair to share some of the progress they’ve made together since the concept was first considered. Ingo Wuggetzer,Airbus’ VP Cabin Marketing, was keen to point out that the details now on show are the result of teamwork and collaboration, not just ideas from the airline or the OEM, “We developed it together. We have been involved for over a year, setting the priorities and shaping the product together.”
For JetBlue the Airspace cabin is seen as an evolution of the company’s product line. After launching Mint three years ago and beginning the economy class (“Core”) cabin refresh project with the A321 fleet it is time for something more significant to come to the A320neo fleet on order.
Our next big thing is Airspace and we cannot be happier. We’re going to leverage the [Airspace] platform as a canvas to paint our inflight brand, innovate and enhance our already great customer experience which I consider one of the best in the US market. I’m really looking forward to being a leader and a global launch customer to partner and create something exceptional for our customers. – Mariya Stoyanova, JetBlue’s Director Product Development
The Airspace “platform” is not available until 2020 meaning that JetBlue will take delivery of roughly 30 A320neo family aircraft without the Airspace product on board based on current fleet plans. But some travelers will still benefit a bit earlier. One of the major components of Airspace – the overhead bins – will be available in 2019. JetBlue is not yet publicly committed to installing those before the full Airspace concept rolls out but at least one other airline is. Wuggetzer shared that “[A]nother North American customer will start with line fit but also take retrofits [of new overhead bins]. We are really proud that we have a big order for retrofit. This proves the value to us. That is a very good signal.”
— Seth Miller (@WandrMe) September 26, 2017
JetBlue is publicly committed to ~70 line-fit deliveries with Airspace as part of the product launch but no retrofits.
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