Qantas, Australia's largest carrier, has ordered three Boeing 747-400s to augment its expanding fleet, Boeing Commercial Airplane Group confirmed today.
The value of the order is approximately US$475 million. Delivery of the 747-400s will occur in 1999 and 2000.
"Qantas maintains a core fleet of 99 aircraft, with the majority being Boeing 737s, 747s and 767s," said Seddik Belyamani, vice-president of international sales, Middle East/Africa/South Asia/Pacific. "The airline continues to rely on Boeing equipment to serve its far-flung route structure, which has demanding payload-range requirements. We're proud Qantas continues to fulfill their requirements with Boeing products and services."
The Boeing 747-400 incorporates advanced technology into one of the world's most modern and fuel-efficient airliners.
The 747-400's 8,290 statute-mile (7,200 nautical-mile) range makes possible non-stop service between cities such as Los Angeles and Sydney, Australia.
The 747-400 consumes 8 percent to 13 percent less fuel than the 747-300 model. On a per-seat basis, that's an improvement of up to 17 percent over earlier model 747s. The wide-body 700-400 embodies advances in aerodynamics, structural materials, avionics and interior design.
Qantas Chief Executive James Strong said, "The decision to acquire the 747-400s followed the first stage of a comprehensive review of future route development programs for the Qantas international network."
"In the period of the fastest growth and highest profitability ever for Qantas, attention has been focused on more efficient use of existing assets, lifting productivity and efficiency while reducing and controlling costs," Strong added. "It is worth noting that since January 1995, Qantas has acquired four 737-400s and four 767-300ER (Extended Range) jetliners, with another two 767-300s scheduled for mid-1998. Even greater capacity growth has resulted from better asset utilization."
Qantas operates an average of 550 flights per day to 52 destinations in all Australian states and territories. The airline operates 2,500 flights a week to more than 100 destinations in 31 countries on five continents.
The 747-400 continues to lead the industry in long-haul travel. More than 1,100 747s of all models have been delivered to customers around the world.