Airbus officially launched today the A321XLR, the longest single-aisle aircraft of all time . The aircraft will be available from 2023 and will have a 15% higher range than the A321LR.
This marks the evolution of the A321 family. Previously, the plane was very popular with airlines for regional flights. But they did not stop there:
- Airbus launched the A321neo (new engine option), which has an extended range and is more fuel efficient.
- Then Airbus introduced the A321LR (long haul) with extended range up to 4,600 miles
- Now, Airbus introduces the A321XLR (extra-long range), which achieves an enormous range increase and can fly nonstop up to 5,400 miles
Airbus claims that the A321XLR consumes 30% less fuel per seat than competing aircraft of the previous generation (which, in my opinion, refers to the 757).
Well, when the Airbus A321XLR already sounds Well known, because the aircraft manufacturer was not thrilled with the introduction of the aircraft. While this is their formal announcement, they have been talking for some months about how they plan to launch an even more far-reaching version of the A321.
This aircraft will make possible markets that otherwise would never have worked. The A321XLR is a less expensive single-aisle aircraft that can be used for longer and less-traveled routes, many of which would simply not be economical with larger aircraft.
Airbus notes that this will help operators to open new worldwide routes, such as India to Europe or China to Australia, and to further extend the capabilities of the A321 across the Atlantic.
Airbus focused on designing the A321XLR to be largely common to the rest of the world with the A320neo family. Where does the added area come from? The A321XLR:
- Has a permanent rear center tank for more fuel; This holds more fuel than several optional additional center tanks, but takes up less space in the hold and provides more space for luggage and cargo.
- Has a modified chassis for an increased maximum take-off weight of 101 tons.  Has an optimized wing trailing edge flap configuration to ensure the same takeoff performance and engine thrust requirements as the current A321neo were impractical, especially not in the 4.600-5.400mile range.
So far, Airbus and Boeing had mainly competitive products, although Boeing still has no competitors in this area. The 737 MAX can compete with the A321neo, but there is no version of the aircraft with this range.
There are rumors that Boeing will sometime introduce the "797" (as it is now called) a competitor, but who knows how far that could be.
I can not wait to see which airlines are ordering this plane – I'm sure it will be a popular one. There are rumors that Americans might be interested in the A321XLR, as well as rumors that JetBlue could turn some of their existing orders for the A321LR into the A321XLR.
What do you think of the A321XLR?