Aeroflot to phase out five more A321s

One of A321 aircraft to be withdrawn by Aeroflot (Photo by Wikipedia)

Five more of Aeroflot’s Airbus A321s may be put up for sale subject to the board’s approval. The board meeting on November 26 will decide whether the airline should get rid of some of its largest-capacity narrowbody aircraft.

The aircraft to be sold are Serial Nos 2903 (tail number VP-BQR), 2912 (VP-BQS), 2957 (VP-BQX), 2965 (VP-BQT), and 3191 (VP-BRW), built between 2004 and 2007.

Earlier, Aeroflot announced phasing out three A321s Serial Nos 2330, 2337, and 2342 (tail numbers VP-BWN, VP-BWO, and VP-BWP, respectively). The airline’s spokesperson told Russian Aviation Insider at the time that the decision was in keeping with the Aeroflot fleet renewal strategy. The average aircraft age in Aeroflot’s fleet stood at 4.2 years at the beginning of November.

The forthcoming aircraft remarketing plans became public in June 2015. The plans called for up to 21 A321s to leave the fleet. The oldest of these aircraft had been in service for 11 years. The lease contracts for these airplanes would expire between 2016 and 2022, the carrier said. It was assumed that some of the aircraft would be sold, and others would be leased back.

Aeroflot, however, noted in a statement that the group would make its final decision on the number of aircraft to be phased out “subject to the current market and economic conditions”. The airline currently operates a total of 26 A321s. Its fleet also includes 13 Boeing 777s, 13 Boeing 737s, 22 A330s, 63 A320s, seven A319s, and 22 Sukhoi Superjet 100s (SSJ 100).

Apart from the A321s, the original list of aircraft to be sold included one A320, as well as several A330-300 and Boeing 777-300ER widebodies. Plans to phase out four ageing Airbus A319s were announced in mid-November. At the same time, Aeroflot agreed to purchase Boeing 737NGs previously operated by Transaero.

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