PIA will be first airline to fly the entire 777 family with 777-300ER joining fleet in Dec.
Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Pakistan International Airlines celebrated the delivery of the carrier's second 777-200LR yesterday at Boeing Field. U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington served as guest speaker at the handover ceremony for PIA's newest airplane.
Scott Carson, Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president of sales, led the Boeing team in congratulating PIA Chairman Tariq Kirmani and his top management for their vision in becoming the launch customer for the world's longest-range jetliner.
"We are very proud to be a part of PIA's future as it operates a family of airplanes that will link Pakistan to the rest of the world and that will provide the first direct links between the United States and Pakistan," Carson said.
Later this year, PIA will take delivery of its first 777-300ER, making it the first airline in the world to operate the entire Boeing 777 family.
During the event, Kirmani outlined his vision for the future growth and profitability of the airline, with the 777 at the core of PIA's long-haul fleet strategy.
"We have had decades of history with Boeing and we look forward to working together for future decades as we take delivery of this remarkable airplane today. The 777 is the cornerstone of our long-haul fleet and we will match its outstanding performance with world-class service on each and every PIA flight," Kirmani said.
PIA took delivery of the first Boeing 777-200LR to enter commercial service in February. The plane is now flying regular nonstop service from Karachi to Toronto.
PIA's second 777-200LR is the airplane that broke the distance record for a commercial jetliner. On Nov. 10, 2005, the airplane landed at London Heathrow after flying 11,664 nautical miles (21,601 kilometers) during a 22-hour, 42-minute flight that left Hong Kong flying eastbound the evening of Nov. 9. The flight was greater than the distance of a trip halfway around the world.
The 777-200LR is the fifth and newest member of the market-leading 777 airplane family. As the world's longest-range commercial airplane, the 777-200LR is capable of connecting virtually any two cities in the world nonstop while carrying more passengers and revenue cargo than any other jetliner. In service, it can transport 301 passengers up to 9,420 nautical miles (17,445 km). Compared with the competition, the fuel-efficient, twin-engine 777-200LR burns 24 percent less fuel per passenger, flies 760 nautical miles farther and can carry 21 more passengers.
Around the world, 46 airlines own or operate more than 540 777s currently in service. To date, Boeing has sold 827 of the popular twin-engine 777 jetliner. Boeing holds a backlog of 279 777 airplanes worth about $64 billion at current list prices.