Virgin America has ordered $1.4 billion worth of new, more efficient LEAP engines from CFM International.
These will be fitted to 30 new Airbus A320 aircraft, scheduled to be delivered in 2016 and 30 of Virgin’s current A320 fleet. The company has estimated that the new engines, coupled with new A320neo planes will be some of the most efficient aircraft in the world.
This means 15% improvements in fuel efficiency, lower carbon emissions and double digit reductions in NOx emissions. Virgin America estimates this will deliver fuel cost savings to the carrier of $1.9 million per aircraft per year.
“Choosing LEAP gives us the best of all worlds – the most advanced technology, significant fuel savings, consistency with our current fleet and the reliability of CFM,” said Virgin America President and CEO David Cush.
“Our airline is known for taking a different approach to amenities, design and service in order to make travel better. But we’re just as committed to finding new ways to make travel more sustainable, even as we grow.”
“The A320neo and the LEAP engine together will create one of the world’s most fuel-efficient commercial aircraft. Our investment today will ultimately help us take a major leap forward in terms of efficiency.”