In a celebration of the continued acceptance of the 777 with customers, and preference by passengers worldwide, The Boeing Company and General Electric jointly confirmed Japan Airlines' (JAL) decision to purchase eight of the newest model 777s, the longer-range derivatives of the 777-300.
"We are delighted to be a launch customer for the longer-range 777-300 airplane," said JAL President Isao Kaneko. "Our experience with the 777-200 and -300 models has been outstanding and we have great confidence in the economics and reliability of this new longer-range member of the 777 family."
The airline plans to use the airplane on international routes replacing its 747 classics.
"Our relationship with JAL spans three decades. We are very proud of this cooperative and long-standing relationship," said Alan Mulally, president, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Group.
JAL was one of the launch customers on the 777 program and participated in the design phase of both the 777-300 and its sister model, the 777-200. The airline has taken delivery of five 777-200s, and five 777-300s, all currently in use on domestic routes in Japan.
The longer-range 777-300 carries more passengers and cargo, and continues the 777 tradition of providing unparalleled levels of comfort and spaciousness.
"We are pleased with JAL's confidence in this terrific aircraft/engine combination," said Jim McNerney, president and CEO of GE Aircraft Engines. "The GE90-115B will deliver all of the benefits of the low-risk, mature GE90 currently in service, whose basic design already produces industry-leading performance and reliability as the 777 ETOPs fleet leader."
The longer-range 777-300 is powered by General Electric GE90-115B engines, a derivative of the highly successful GE90.
The engine is scheduled to earn U.S. Federal Aviation Administration type certification and validation in late 2002. The 777-300 longer-range derivative is progressing toward type certification in the third quarter of 2003. Type certification recognizes that this particular engine/airframe combination will pass stringent testing and safety requirements, and is ready to enter passenger service.
Passengers prefer the 777 as the most comfortable airplane in its class. A survey of more than 6,000 passengers flying on long-range routes to and from Europe and Asia revealed a three-out-of-four preference for the 777 compared to the A330/A340 models.
With more than 400 jetliners on order, the 777 has captured 62 percent of the total market share and 70 percent of the orders placed since the airplane program was launched in 1990.