United Airlines orders 50 Airbus planes to replace Boeing 757s

NEW YORK (AP) — United Airlines said Tuesday it has ordered 50 Airbus A321XLR planes, worth an estimated $6.5 billion, to replace an existing fleet of aging Boeings.
The new Airbus planes, due for delivery in 2024, will allow United to retire its Boeing 757-200s, the company said.
The Airbus order is the latest blow to the US manufacturer, already deep in the crisis surrounding its 737 MAX.
Boeing, whose 737 MAX has been grounded around the world after two accidents resulting in 346 deaths, does not currently have any new aircraft to compete with the Airbus A321XLR in the mid-range of the market.
Airbus launched the A321XLR this year alone, at the Paris Air Show in June.
The single-aisle aircraft’s range is 15 per cent greater than its predecessor model, the A321LR, making it a cost-effective alternative to long-haul wide-body aircraft.
United said it intends to use the new aircraft to serve additional European destinations from US East Coast hubs in Newark/New York and Washington.
United turned to Airbus for the purchase due to a lack of Boeing planes in the mid-range of the market, a source close to the matter told AFP on condition of anonymity.
“Currently, Boeing does not offer any aircraft that can replace the 757,” the source said, adding that negotiations between Airbus and United began several months ago.
Boeing, which is currently focused on returning its MAX plane to the sky, has already postponed the possible announcement of a new plane model until next year.
The manufacturer recently presented the design to several airlines, industry sources said.
Airbus decided to stop publishing list prices for its aircraft from 2019. However, the A321XLR is a long-range version of the A321, whose unit value was $129.5 million in 2018.
Meanwhile, United has postponed the receipt of its first 45 long-haul Airbus A350 planes for five years.
The company, which ordered the planes in 2017, said it now plans to deliver them in 2027 instead of 2022.

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