The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] and New Delhi-based SpiceJet today celebrated the delivery of the airline's first Next-Generation 737-800 with Blended Winglets, the first of 10 737-800s ordered. The order, which includes options for 10 additional airplanes, was originally announced by the airline at the Aero India Air Show in February 2005.
"The induction of the 737-800s into our fleet is a key element in offering comfortable and reliable service for our customers," said SpiceJet Board Director Bhulo Kansagra. "The superior operating economics and unmatched reliability of the Next-Generation 737 will provide the cost-saving performance that supports our low-cost structure."
SpiceJet, one of India's newest start-up private carriers, will use a single-class seating configuration for 189 passengers on its short and medium-haul flights within India. The airline will receive three additional 737-800s in 2006, with the remaining six to be delivered in 2007. SpiceJet first began service in May of 2005 with three leased Boeing 737-800s.
"The 737 continues to play an integral role in meeting the needs of India's rapidly growing aviation market," said Dinesh Keskar, vice president of Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "This delivery represents another important milestone in our partnership with SpiceJet, as well as our more than 60-year commitment to the Indian aviation industry."
The digitally designed 737-800 is the most technologically advanced airplane in the single-aisle market. With a new wing and more powerful engines, the 737 can fly higher, faster and farther than previous models and its competitor. The advanced-technology Blended Winglets allow airlines to save on fuel, extend range, carry more payload and reduce engine maintenance costs. Unlike traditional winglets that attach at abrupt angles to the wing, Blended Winglets gently curve out and up from the wingtip, reducing aerodynamic drag and increasing performance. The 8-foot (2.4 meters) high winglets add about 5 feet (1.5 meters) to the airplane's total wingspan.
As of January 31, 2006, 95 customers have placed orders for more than 3,000 Next-Generation 737s; the program has 1,154 undelivered units in its order backlog with a value of more than $73 billion at current list prices.
For more information about the 737, visit http://www.boeing.com/commercial/737family/index.html.