Gulf Air and CFM International finalized the purchase agreement for 65 LEAP-1A engines to power the airline’s new fleet of Airbus A320neo family aircraft. The agreement, which includes engines for 17 A320neo and 12 A321neo, is valued at approximately $1 billion U.S. at list price.
The signing ceremony took place during the Bahrain Royal visit to Paris. The engine order was originally announced in November 2017.
Gulf Air has been a CFM customer since 1992 and currently operates a fleet of 16 Airbus A320ceo aircraft powered by CFM56-5B engines. With its new LEAP-1A-powered A320neo family aircraft, Gulf Air will strengthen its footprint in the Middle-East with new routes, while enhancing its services for customers.
“We are delighted to expand our long-term relationship with CFM International. We have been operating CFM engines for three decades, and we are excited to introduce the LEAP engine into our new fleet of A320neo family aircraft. This state-of-the art combo will be definitely a key asset of our sustainable growth in the near future”, said Krešimir Kucko, Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Air.
“It is an honor to celebrate this agreement which reflects Gulf Air’s confidence in the CFM products. We are committed to further develop this great collaboration while providing Gulf Air with the proven efficiency and reliability that are the trademark of the CFM LEAP engines,” said Olivier Andriès, President of CFM parent company Safran Aircraft Engines.
The LEAP engine entered commercial service in 2016 and is providing its more than 100 operators worldwide with a 15= percent improvement in fuel efficiency, with an equivalent reduction in CO2 emissions; and lower noise and NOx emissions. To date, the fleet in service has logged more than 4 million engine flight hours.
Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain, commenced operations in 1950, becoming one of the first commercial airlines established in the Middle East. Today, Gulf Air is a major international carrier serving 47 cities in 26 countries.
The airline operates double daily flights or more to 10 regional cities, in addition to select destinations in the Indian Subcontinent and Europe, from its hub at Bahrain International Airport. Gulf Air currently serves all its destinations with a combination of wide and narrow body fleet of 36 aircraft. The modern fleet will herald a new era for Gulf Air as it continues to enhance its product and service offering. Renowned for its traditional Arabian hospitality, evidenced by the airline’s signature family and business friendly products, Gulf Air is committed to being an industry leader and developing products and services that reflect the evolving needs and aspirations of its passengers.
Gulf Air connects Bahrain to the world and, as such, is a key national infrastructure asset, serving as a powerful driver for the economy and supporting the Kingdom’s on-going economic growth. With its mobile app and Bahrain stopover program, the airline promotes Bahrain as a tourist destination to the world.
Gulf Air has been the title sponsor of the FORMULA 1 GULF AIR BAHRAIN GRAND PRIX ever since it made history as the first Formula 1 Grand Prix to be held in the Middle East in 2004. In addition, the airline has been Official Carrier of the biennial Bahrain International Airshow since it was first held in 2010.
LEAP-1A engines are a product of CFM International, a 50/50 joint company between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines. The LEAP engine family is the fastest-selling in aviation history with more than 17,350 orders and commitments.