The biggest commercial aircraft order in history begat the biggest airline seating order in history. Recaro announced today that it will supply nearly 100,000 seats for new A320neo family aircraft ordered by Indigo Partners-backed airlines. Wizz Air accounts for 31,767 of the seats. The European carrier will fly with Recaro’s SL3710 economy class seat on the 146 Airbus NEO aircraft slated for delivery starting in 2021.
This is potentially the swiftest ramp-up of an order we have ever experienced, and I am confident that our teams are well-prepared to handle this. – Dr. Hiller, CEO and Shareholder of Recaro Aircraft Seating
Weighing in at just 8 kilograms per seat, the SL3710 is the lightest seat in Recaro’s portfolio and one of the lightest seats on the market. Wizz Air is not just getting the SL3710, however. The company notes that its sought specific customizations from Recaro to further ensure that the SL3710s meet Wizz Air’s needs.
Heiko Holm, Chief Operations Officer of Wizz Air, pointed to the customization work as demonstrating that Recaro was “willing to go the extra mile to meet our needs.” Holm also pointed out the “global network of production and customer service sites” as a key factor in the decision. With multiple airlines and bases across Europe and the Wizz Air Abu Dhabi outpost launching imminently, the global footprint matters more than ever.
The SL3710’s light weight is important both for cost savings and reducing emissions. And the thinner seat profile also helps the company realize its high density cabin configuration. The A321neo layout features 239 seats (1 short of the aircraft’s maximum rated capacity). The A320neo carries 186 seats on board. But the decision is about more than just weight. The SL3710 is not the lightest on the market today.
A system-wide deal for Indigo Partners
That the order is part of the broader Indigo Partners deal, covering Frontier Airlines in the United States, Volaris in Mexico, and JetSmart in Chile lends even greater value to the international footprint Recaro operates with. It also brings about a standardization effort for the group. Volaris currently flies with the prior generation Recaro SL3510, as does JetSmart.
But Frontier flies with Acro seats on its A320-family fleet today. Wizz Air’s latest deliveries include the Essenza seat from Geven. Up to now Geven was the exclusive supplier of Wizz Air seats since the carrier first acquired Airbus narrow-body aircraft in 2007. At the time of that contract signing it was the largest deal in Geven’s history.
It seems Wizz Air likes being a part of such milestones.
AeroTelegraph scored a scoop on this news before the official announcement.
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