Posts: 1674
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 1999 1:14 pm

New Fleet For Ansett

Wed May 12, 1999 2:31 pm

The Melbourne Age newspapertoday ran a large article regarding Ansett's proposed fleet upgrade which has been delayed a number of times pending Ansett sorting out their business case. With Ansett now having access to Singapore's funds it looks like it on the go again

It seems Ansett is expected to commit to buy 35 Airbus aircraft, valued at $2.4 billion, before Christmas in a rationalisation of its ageing and mixed aircraft fleet.

With the pending Singapore Airlines buy of News Ltd's 50 per cent stake in Ansett moving rapidly towards completion, Ansett, which is the 2nd biggest airline in Australia after Qantas is keen to run with a single-family model for most of its routes. The savings in crew training and maintenace would be huge.

According to industry analysts in London, the Ansett order will be based on Airbus A320 family. Ansett already operates 19 A320's.

It is rumoured Ansett will buy 10 A321s to replace its 10 Boeing 767s and up to 25 of the smaller A318 and A319s to replace the airline's 22 737-300s and some BAe146s. The airline will take delivery of the A321 starting in 2001 and the other models from 2002. Ansett disposed of its last 727 in 1997. Its regional subsidiary Kendall has an outstanding order for 12 Canadair Regional Jets, the first of the type in Australia.

THe order could be delayed if Air New Zealand, Ansett's 50% owner exercise its right and block SIA's purchase of News Limited's 50% but ANZ is now rumoured to be happy to let the deal go through.

Due to production slot shortages, Airbus has told Ansett it will only hold slots for them if they order before Christmas.

Some people see the A320 family giving Ansett a marketing advantage over Qantas's competing 737s citing US studies showing people like the A320's extra width and larger overhead lockers. Whilst the 737NG has redressed some of these issues, it is so different from Ansett's 737-300's it would be like Ansett getting another new type and not offer the same savings.

Ansett is Airbus' only client in Australia with Qantas and Air New Zealand both operating all Boeing fleets except for some BAe146's in Qantas' regional fleet. Qantas sold its last 4 A300's this year.
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Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2000 3:58 pm

RE: New Fleet For Ansett

Wed May 12, 1999 3:27 pm

I think thats all nice, but we've heard it all before. It is highly likely, and has been since the mid nineties(about 94) that ansett would eventually replace 737-300
with the A319. And, we've also known that the company has been interested in the the A321, but, i would wait for something more concreate yet. The 767s won't go that easily, as they are used for Ansett's most popular international service - flights to bali from the major east cost cities. Maybe there is room for some A321s, but i use those 767 services a bit on the major trunk run, BNE-SYD-MEL, and, they've been pretty full everytime i have been onboard lately. I think things could be a little slower than everone expects. It also depends (actually here is one of their A320s flying past me now) on exactly hom much cash the want to fork up. Qantas is likely to stick with its current 737-300s and 737-400s for a long time yet. Ansett may very well decedide replacing the most numerous type in its fleet is to expensive for the imediate future. But, as you said, this was the opinion of industry Anaylisits in London. I don't know how well the A321 will go down with the Australian traveling public, who are used to nothing bigger than an A320, then jump into the 767-200.

Such a long 'tube of a plane' has never been in service here, and a long time ago, the 757 was ruled out for that reason. I think they may just replace the 737-300s with A319s. And then, eventually, replace the 767-200s with the A310 replacement when it is developed. By for the short term, only replacing the 737-300s with A319s, Ansett would have the same efficiency as Qantas. Which has basically standardised on 2 types, 737, 767 for domestic operations. Actually, the A320 and A319, as well as 767-200, for domestic would be a little more efficient than QFs, 733 and 734s.

Its all very interesting, and i guarentee you more Airbuses are on the way eventually - just in exactly what form and how many is the big question. I have heeard so many different versons. If i listen to the ones five years ago, the 777 would be in the AN fleet now. we'll all just have to wait and see.

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