Delta has increased its Airbus A220 order from 75 to 90 planes, the latest development for an aircraft model poised to be a significant player in U.S. commercial aviation.

Formerly known as the Bombardier C-Series, the A220 has taken off since Bombardier partnered with Airbus on two variants. The 220-100 seats 100 to 130 passengers, and the 220-300 seats 130 to 150. 

When Bombardier and Airbus announced their partnership in October 2017, Delta's order of 75 jets was the only one from a U.S. airline. But this past July, Airbus took orders of 60 A220-300s from the nascent airline code-named Moxy, which JetBlue founder David Neeleman plans to launch in 2021. JetBlue also ordered 60 A220-300s last July, with deliveries scheduled from 2020 to 2025. JetBlue plans to use the planes to replace its fleet of 100-seat Embraer E190s.

With its order of 15 additional A220s, Delta now plans to have a mix of 40 A220-100 and 50 A220-300s. The aircraft will replace Delta's aged fleet of Boeing 717s. Deliveries began last year and are scheduled to last through 2023.

The carrier's first A220-100 flights will launch on Jan. 31 from New York LaGuardia to Boston and from LaGuardia to Dallas/Fort Worth.

Delta and the other buyers have lauded the A220 series for its broad interior and for its range and fuel efficiency. Airbus says the A220-300 has a range of 3,800 nautical miles and is 20% more fuel efficient per seat than aircraft preceding it.

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI