Air Berlin Orders Six Boeing Next-Generation 737-800s

The Boeing Company today confirmed an order from Air Berlin for six Next-Generation 737-800s. The deal is valued at approximately $300 million.

This is a new order not previously accounted for in cumulative order totals published by Boeing on Dec. 15. This order brings the company's number of orders for 1999 to 386 commercial airplanes.

Air Berlin chose the Next-Generation 737-800 to expand its single-aisle fleet after extensive analysis between the Boeing Next-Generation 737 and Airbus A320.

Air Berlin will take the last of these six airplanes in 2002 with the last option in 2003. Air Berlin took delivery of its first 737-800 in May 1998 and today operates 10 of the Next-Generation airplanes. With this order, Air Berlin's Next-Generation 737 fleet will grow to 20 airplanes by 2002.

"Since entering service with Air Berlin in 1998, the Next-Generation 737 has become the backbone of our fleet. We depend on the airplane's performance and reliability to keep our edge in a very competitive market. We are pleased to expand our Next-Generation 737-800 fleet and build our future around this aircraft," said Joachim Hunold, president and managing partner - Air Berlin.

Boeing incorporated enhancements in the 737-600/-700/-800/-900 series where they add value to airline operations. These include a redesigned passenger cabin, a flight deck featuring the most versatile display system offered on any commercial jetliner, and a new wing and engines for improved operating performance and reduced noise and emissions. Making the airplane as quiet and as fuel-efficient as possible was a priority for Boeing in the design of the Next-Generation 737 family. The result is an airplane family that is the most modern and advanced in its class.

The 737-800 is powered by CFM56-7 engines produced by CFMI, a joint venture of General Electric Co., of the U.S., and SNECMA of France. The CFM56-7 is the top engine in its class for environmental sensitivity. It incorporates new technologies that reduce noise and emissions well beyond required standards.

The Next-Generation 737 family completed its first year of service in 1998 and has flown more than 500,000 hours with an unmatched dispatch reliability rate of 99.16 percent. The Next-Generation 737 is the fastest selling - and fastest delivering - new airplane program in history. Boeing has rolled out 400 Next-Generation airplanes in less than three years - an industry record.

"Air Berlin's continued business success and the decision to purchase additional Next-Generation 737-800s to expand their business in the future, indicates the unmatched performance our customers are experiencing with their Next-Generation airplanes. Their commitment to this airplane and to Boeing is something we truly appreciate," said Chris Longridge, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Group vice president - European Sales. "We are dedicated to our partnership with Air Berlin and their future success."

Customers appreciate the Next-Generation 737's low operating costs, range flexibility and an unmatched reliability rate. Passengers appreciate its new, more spacious interior and comfortable seats that are wider than on early 737 models.

With more than 4,475 total orders and more than 3,555 deliveries, the Boeing 737 is the best-selling commercial jetliner of all time. More than 800 737s are in the air at any time, with one taking off every six seconds.

For further information:
Lewis Brinson
Sean Griffin