Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Ryanair yesterday celebrated the delivery of the 800 th Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 commercial jetliner ever produced, marking another milestone for the world's best-selling 737 airplane family.
Ryanair, Europe's largest, most profitable and most successful low-cost carrier, received both the 800 th and the 801 st Next-Generation 737-800 this week. The airline's all-737 fleet now includes 57 Next-Generation 737 and 19 Classic 737 jetliners.
"The 737's reliability is a huge contributor to our ability to get passengers to their destinations on time and at the lowest possible fares," said Michael O'Leary, Ryanair chief executive. "There's not another airplane out there that can match it. We're talking about an airplane that has 189 seats, but requires less maintenance than others in its class and has greater fuel efficiency. With fuel prices skyrocketing, the 737's efficiency is a precious benefit."
The reliability of the Next-Generation 737 allows operators to more efficiently use their airplanes. Ryanair's rate of on-time departures between June, 2003, and May, 2004, was 99.7 percent, making it Europe 's top on-time airline as reflected in Association of European Airlines monthly statistics.
Ryanair has another 98 737s on order, which are scheduled for delivery through 2008.
"There's a reason customers like Ryanair have made the 737-800 and the rest of the Next-Generation 737 family the best-selling airplane family in history. It is because of the tremendous reliability, efficiencies and overall value these airplanes bring every day to the world's airlines," said Carolyn Corvi, 737/757 vice president and general manager.
At the end of July 2004, Boeing had won orders for 1,167 737-800s and had delivered 793 to 52 operators around the world. It flies up to 305 nautical miles farther, and has operating costs that are four to 11 percent lower, than the Airbus A320.
The Next-Generation 737 is the most technologically advanced single-aisle airplane and the fastest selling airplane of all time. Overall, Boeing has delivered more than 1,500 Next-Generation 737s. Its 737 backlog at the end of July was almost 800 airplanes.