Boeing and ATA Announce Purchase of Additional 757-300 Airplanes
INDIANAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 24, 2002--American Trans Air, Inc. (ATA), the principal subsidiary of Amtran, Inc. (Nasdaq:AMTR - news) and The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA - news) announced signing an agreement to exercise options for two additional Boeing 757-300 airplanes for delivery in 2003.
The order will bring the number of airplanes in the ATA 757 fleet to 27, 12 of the new 757-300's and 15 of the 757-200's. The 757-300 will be powered by Rolls Royce RB 211-535-E4C engines. ATA was the North American launch customer for the -300 model of the 757 and is the only operator of the performance enhanced -E4C model engine.
``We are delighted with ATA's decision to once again choose the 757-300. The decision reflects the success they are experiencing with this excellent airplane. The proven reliability, fuel efficiency and comfortable interior of the 757-300 deliver value for both operators and passengers,'' said Pat Shanahan, vice president and general manager of the 757 program.
Boeing Capital Corporation increased its relationship with ATA as well, with a commitment to provide lease financing on the additional airplanes. The airplanes deliver in May and June 2003 and have a list price value of $166 million.
The 757-300 has the lowest seat-mile cost of any single-aisle and mid-sized jetliner, making it an extremely cost-effective airplane for airlines to operate. It burns less fuel than older mid-range airplanes, meets community noise restrictions well below current Stage 3 limits and complies with strict new international emissions standards.
Since taking delivery of the first 757-300 airplane in August 2001, ATA has experienced exceptional performance from the efficient, single-aisle airplane. For the 90-day period ending December 31, 2001, the five delivered airplanes had a fleet-wide reliability rate of 99.5%.
``We are very pleased by the airplane's reliability, especially considering it's a new model airframe. Our maintenance folks have been working with the Boeing technical support team, and together we expect our -300 fleet-wide reliability to exceed 99.6%. It's a great airplane,'' said Terry Kerber, ATA's Vice President of Line Maintenance.
ATA flies the 757-300 in a 247-seat configuration and the 757-200 in a 216-seat configuration. With the additional 31 seats on the 757-300, ATA has experienced up to an 11 percent reduction in direct operating costs per seat mile over the 757-200, excluding ownership costs. The larger 757-300 airplane also is the largest airplane capable of being operated out of ATA's primary hub, Chicago's Midway Airport.
The new airplane has been well received by the ATA customers as well. The passenger cabin on the 757-300 is based on the popular, award-winning Boeing 777 interior design, offering passengers a spacious, user-friendly cabin with comfortable, aesthetically pleasing surroundings.
``With the combination of the new aircraft, with its leather seating, drop-down video systems and the new facility in Chicago Midway, ATA has significantly improved the customer's experience,'' said Don Moonjian, ATA's vice president of marketing.
The additional airplanes are the first options to be exercised by ATA. In May 2000, ATA and its partners, Boeing, Boeing Capital Corporation, GE Aircraft Engines, GE Capital Aviation Services, ILFC and Rolls Royce signed agreements for 39 737-800 airplanes with 40 options, and 10 757-300 airplanes with 10 options. As of December 31, 2001, ATA had taken delivery of 14 737-800's and five 757-300's. In 2002 ATA will take delivery of 16 737-800's, one 757-200 and five 757-300.