Breeze Airways Eyes Stretched Airbus A220

Daniel Fowkes
13 May 2024
· Aircraft 
· Airlines 
Breeze Airways has reaffirmed strong interest in acquiring a stretched A220, dubbed the A220-500 if Airbus moves ahead with the aircraft.

Breeze Airways continues reaffirming its interest in Airbus developing a stretched version of the A220 based on the -300 variant, per Aviation Week.

There has long been discussion over a proposed stretch to the popular single-aisle jet that would enhance Airbus’ portfolio and programme. However, despite interest, Airbus has yet to move ahead with a formal stretch.

Now, as part of new long-term plans for Breeze Airways, president Tom Doxey, when speaking at the CAPA Airline Leader Summit, reaffirmed interest for a stretch.

The new low-cost airline began operations with the Embraer E-jet and moved towards the A220. It expects to be operating solely with the A220 by 2025, and thus, it wants to commit to the programme further.

On numerous occasions, Breeze Airways has expressed interest in a stretch to the A220, most recently calling it an interesting aeroplane for the carrier.

Airbus Says No A220-500 Soon

However, at the 2023 Paris Airshow, Airbus said that the two current variants of the A220 are a priority right now. As a result, launching a new variant in the current operating environment wouldn’t be ideal.

The operating environment Airbus speaks of relates to the persistent supply chain issues plaguing the manufacturer’s ability to offer robust deliveries and smooth production standards.

The stretch was denied following Bank of America’s adamant reporting that a launch would come at the 2023 Paris Airshow. However, industry sources quickly denied the claims, and Airbus’ official commentary backed this up. Ultimately, no variant was to be launched.

More Airlines Interested In A220-500

However, Airbus is aware of the interest in a stretch A220, and Breeze Airways is not the only customer to have expressed key interest in the prospective new variant.

airBaltic has been another leader in calling for an A220 stretch, primarily led by its goal to operate a fleet of 100 Airbus A220 jets in the future. This aircraft type has been hugely important to its growth within the industry.

airBaltic has long expressed interest in a stretched Airbus A220, dubbed the A220-500 – Photo: Christian Junker | Photography

In the early 2023 stages, the airBaltic chief executive, Mark Gauss, told Flightglobal that discussions around a stretch had been ongoing for some time. However, these discussions had yet to materialise into anything.

While the A220-500 is clearly of interest to airlines and is being considered internally at Airbus, prioritisation also lies elsewhere. Airbus is still attempting to recover from the global pandemic and conflict outbreak and their subsequent effect on its day-to-day operations.

Therefore, while a stretch A220 may become a possibility sometime in the future, based on the latest comments from Airbus executives, this won’t occur in the short term. Additionally, Airbus must stabilise the A220 programme, ensure it’s profitable, and ensure a smooth operation before considering adding another variant to the mix.

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