China Southwest Airlines (XIN) today accepted delivery of its first Boeing Next-Generation 737-800. Attending this milestone event were Rucen Wang, China Southwest Airlines president, and Larry Dickenson, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Group, senior vice president - Asia/Pacific Sales.
"This new airplane will be a great addition to our fleet," Wang said. "The performance capabilities of the Next-Generation 737 mean we can offer higher frequency and capacity on key routes. Most important of all, our passengers can enjoy the comfort of flying in the high-quality interior, with its state-of-the-art entertainment system. Although our passengers are in the air for short periods of time, we want them to experience the ultimate comfort in flying."
China Southwest - one of the largest carriers in the People's Republic of China - has equipped its first Boeing 737-800 with LCD video and audio entertainment systems.
The commonality features of the 737-800 flight deck display with flight decks in China Southwest's 737-300s allows for more efficient pilot training.
China Southwest configured its initial 737-800 to carry 168 passengers - eight in first class and 160 in the economy section. With the versatility of the Boeing family of airplanes, the passenger cabin can be converted to an all-economy cabin arrangement for tourist markets.
The Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 is a high-gross-weight model that can fly nearly 4,000 nautical miles non-stop to domestic and international gateways in Asia. China Southwest plans to use their Next-Generation 737-800 fleet for routes connecting Chongqing to other Chinese cities including Shenzhen, Haikou, Kunming, and Urumuqi.
To date, 61 customers worldwide have placed orders for 1,216 Next-Generation 737s. Since its launch in 1993, the Boeing Next-Generation 737 models have become the fastest-selling airplanes in the world.