Air France-KLM will add up to 90 new long-range Airbus A350 aircraft to its fleet in the coming years, under an order unveiled Monday.
The aircraft, which include 50 firm A350-900s and -1000s plus 40 purchase rights, are worth roughly $16.2 billion, based on Cirium Ascend’s full-life base values. Deliveries will begin in 2026 and run through at least 2030.
The deal still requires approval of the Air France-KLM board.
“It is the perfect fit for the network needs of the group and boasts outstanding performances: it is a quieter, more fuel efficient and more cost-effective aircraft compared to previous generations,” Air France-KLM CEO Ben Smith said in a statement.
Air France-KLM was reportedly considering both the Airbus A350 as well as the Boeing 777X and 787 for the order. The planes will replace older Airbus A330s and Boeing 777s in the group’s fleet.
The Air Current reported earlier in September that, due to range considerations owing to the closure of Russian airspace to European airlines for flights to Asia, Air France-KLM was leaning towards the A350 for the order.
The deal is the latest win for Airbus from Air France-KLM. In December 2021, the group ordered at least 100 A320neo family aircraft for its KLM and Transavia brands. The planes will replace older Boeing 737s at both airlines. And earlier that year Air France-KLM was a launch customer for the new A350 freighter.
Air France already operates 22 A350-900s and has firm orders for 19 more aircraft. With the latest deal, Air France-KLM will eventually operate at least 99 A350s, which will make it one of the largest operators of the plane globally.