We're down to about 2 A models left in the fleet I believe. I haven't seen one fly into here since about early March. They should be gone very, very soon. Those aircraft have about 2000 lbs less payload than the B/B+'s.
Back in 2001 or 2002, all of the Pinnacle Saabs were transfered over to XJ
into order to simplify Airlink operations. It made no sense to have two seperate Saab operators, especially since PCL was growing leaps and bounds and XJ
The former Pinnacle Saabs, (besides having the PX
regs) are also noticably different than the XJ
Saabs. (The B+'s that will remain) On the B's the lav is in the back of the cabin, seat 33, the seats are a blue leather, and the have different Passenger Service units. Plus they also sounds somewhat different in-flight. On the XJ
B+ Saabs, they have tan leather seats, lav in the front by the galley, seat 34, (4 across in row 11), and have newer looking interiors. The condition of the B's somewhat varies. A few weeks ago I was on 360 and 370. 370 looked absolutely terrible inside, the cabin was rather worn, scratched up and the paint on the outside was looking pretty shabby. The seat in front of me 2A, was busted and would not stay in the up and locked position. Then I was on 360 on a connecting flight and it was in fine shape. The interior looked years newer, plus the paint job appeared a lot better. Its all dependent.
The new B+'s are pretty consistent. The older B's I guess you never know what you are going to get.
In the past few years there have been a bunch of odd-ball Saabs phased out of the fleet, both A & B models that were acquired from various leasing companies when NW
was rapidly growing its Saab fleet back in the day.
The B+'s will remain for the long-term.