Topic Author
Posts: 834
Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 9:03 pm

Airbus Order Codes?

Tue Jan 18, 2000 9:44 pm

Hi to all,

I posted this question here several months ago, but no-one ever really answered, so I thought I'd give it another try...

Boeing uses airline order codes with their aircraft, e.g. a B737-200 destined for Sabena would be B737-229. I was wondering whether the same thing goes for the codes in the Airbus models, e.g. A340-211, A330-223, A319-112. All of them examples from the Sabena fleet as well.
So, are these codes related to the airliner originally ordering the aircraft in question? And if not, what do they stand for?

Looking forward to any valuable information,

Posts: 8943
Joined: Wed Aug 18, 1999 5:49 am

RE: Airbus Order Codes?

Tue Jan 18, 2000 10:01 pm

As far as I can gather, the first number is the model type (as with Boeing), then the engine manufacturer and finally, the last one refers to the gross weight in ascending order. So, let's take an A310-300, of SIA and other of PIA. The SIA aircraft is a -324, so the -3.. is obvious. The 2 is for PW, whereas the PIA aircraft is a GE model, so it has a zero. The final number is rather "less firm", in that the first PW powered -300 was a -321, then the next one up was a -322. SIA's -300s were higher Gross Weight models than the -321s and -322s, so they became -324s (was there ever a -323?). In the case of GE, they started at -304 (ie Aeroflot, CSA and LH), then there were a few -307s, but PIA - possibly because of its hot/high requirements got -308s.

There is a pattern with regard to manufacturers:
- where the middle number if 0, it's GE
- 1 = CFM56 (hence A320s and A340s)
- 2 = PW
- 4 = RR, so the new A340s and the Cathay and AC A330s are -.4. models.

Does this make sense? Hope it helps.

Topic Author
Posts: 834
Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 9:03 pm

RE: Airbus Order Codes?

Tue Jan 18, 2000 10:32 pm


Thanks a lot for your response. It makes things quite a bit clearer.
So with Airbus, there's no way of knowing which airline originally ordered the aircraft in question just by looking at the model number? In other words, you'll always need a history of registration numbers for that, am I correct?

Thanks again for the info,

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Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

US And UA Airbuses

Wed Jan 19, 2000 4:30 am

Okay, could you explain these codes?

US has 319-112 and 320-214.

UA has 319-131 and 320-232.

What is Engine type 3? Is that the IAE V2500?

Also, does that mean that UA's 320s are a lower gross weight than US's? (That could explain why US has had less range problems than UA with their 320s (allegedly).)