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A320 Family

The market leader

THE BEST KEEPS ON GETTING BETTER

The A320 single-aisle jetliner family (composed of the A318, A319, A320 and A321) is the undisputed best-selling aircraft product line of all time. It is used in a full range of services from very short-haul airline routes to intercontinental segments, on operations from challenging in-city airports to high-altitude airfields and an Antarctic ice runway, and on VVIP and government missions with the most discerning passengers. 

To ensure this true market leader keeps its competitive edge, Airbus continues to invest in improvements across the product line, including development of the A320neo new engine option, enhancements to the jetliner’s aerodynamics such as Sharklets wingtip devices, upgrades to the widest passenger cabin in its class, and extended service intervals for the airframe.

From Airbus’ launch of the A320neo in December 2010 through 31 December 2012, a total of 1,734 firm orders were received from 36 customers for new engine option aircraft.  This represents a 62 market share when compared to its direct competitor, as well as an important percentage of the more than 9,000 overall orders logged by Airbus for the entire A320 Family.

A320NEO: SETTING NEW STANDARDS

A320 with Sharklets
A320 with Sharklets

The A320neo provides minimum change with maximum benefit for the best-selling A319, A320 and A321 through the incorporation of two new engine choices – the PW1100G PurePower from Pratt & Whitney and CFM International’s LEAP – along with Airbus’ Sharklets large wing tip devices.  

These improvements will deliver fuel savings of 15 per cent and an additional flight distance of 500 nautical miles (950 kilometres), or the ability to carry two tonnes more payload at a given range. For the environment, the A320neo’s fuel savings translate into some 3,600 tonnes less CO2 per aircraft per year. Additionally, the A320neo will provide a double-digit reduction in NOx emissions and reduced engine noise. 

The new A320 versions will have over 95 per cent airframe commonality with the A320ceo (current engine option) versions, enabling it to fit seamlessly into existing A320 Family fleets – a key factor for Airbus customers and operators who have taken delivery of more than 5,200 aircraft as of 1 January 2013.

SHARKLETS FOR THE A320 FAMILY

The first Sharklet-equipped A321

Airbus has enhanced its A320 Family jetliners with fuel-saving Sharklets, which are available as an option on new-build A320ceo aircraft and are standard on the A320neo product line. These devices cut down on aerodynamic drag by helping reduce the spiral-shaped vortices that are formed at the wingtips of any aircraft during flight.

The Sharklets bring four per cent savings in overall fuel consumption on long route sectors to A320 aircraft, while also improving takeoff performance and increasing payload by as much as 450 kg. – allowing for additional range or more passengers to be carried.

These devices also should allow for less thrust to be used during takeoff when runway performance is not “limiting,” thereby decreasing airport noise. In addition to their environmental benefits, the Sharklets’ aerodynamic improvements are to provide multiple advantages for operators – including increased range and payload, better takeoff performance and rate-of-climb, higher optimum altitude, reduced engine maintenance costs and higher residual aircraft value.

Deliveries of the A320ceo jetliners with Sharklets began in December 2012 with the first aircraft’s handover to AirAsia –  the largest low-cost carrier in Asia and the biggest A320 Family airline customer.  

With the popularity of its Sharklets, Airbus also is pursuing a large winglet retrofit option for the in-service fleet of A320 Family jetliners – which will further enhance the fuel efficiency and residual value of these aircraft operated around the world.

FAMILY VALUES

A320 Family’s spacious cabin include wider seats for unmatched passenger comfort
A320 Family’s spacious cabin include wider seats for unmatched passenger comfort

The A320 family’s cornerstone aircraft is the A320, which accommodates 150 passengers in a typical two-class arrangement, and up to 180 with high-density seating.  The stretched-fuselage A321 version seats 185 passengers in the two-class layout, and up to 220 for a high-density cabin.  The shorter-fuselage A319 has a 124-passenger capacity in the two-class configuration, and up to 156 in high-density, while the smallest – Airbus’ A318 – seats 107 passengers in the two-class cabin and 132 with high-density seating.

The A320 Family offers all of the benefits from Airbus’ advances in innovation and technology, which result in increased revenue opportunities.  These aircraft were the first commercial jetliners to incorporate fly-by-wire flight controls.  In addition, their optimised fuselage improves passenger revenue with the widest cabin in the single-aisle marketplace, and increased cargo revenue due to the larger cargo holds and integrated on-board loading systems.

Advantages of the A320 Family’s spacious cabin – which is seven inches larger than its competitor – include wider seats for unmatched passenger comfort, a wider aisle for faster boarding and highly efficient in-flight service, more space for carry-on baggage, and choices of seating configurations in four-, five- and six-abreast layouts.

GIVING A LIFT TO THE WORLD

Since the A320’s service introduction in 1988, this highly capable jetliner product line has transported approximately 90 per cent of the world’s population in total numbers, carrying some six billion passengers.

The A320 Family’s numbers speak for themselves: An A320 takes off or lands somewhere in the world every 2.5 seconds of every day, more than 50 million operating cycles logged since entry-in-service, and a best-in-its-class dispatch reliability of over 99 per cent.

By totally redefining the level of comfort for passengers, and delivering unmatched efficiency plus the best in technology for operators, the A320 Family has won a majority market share in segments that range from mainline network carriers and low-cost airlines to charter operators and leasing companies.  It also has become an aircraft of choice for VIP and government transportation with the Airbus Corporate Jetliner versions.

CONSTANT IMPROVEMENTS

A320 Family in formation flight
A320 Family in formation flight

To regularly enhance the A320 Family’s capabilities and performance, Airbus invests more than 100 million euros annually in keeping the aircraft highly competitive and efficient.  

In addition to the A320neo and Sharklets, Airbus has continuously improved payload and range since the A320 Family’s service entry, while various aerodynamic refinements have brought additional reductions in drag for better fuel efficiency and lower emissions. 

Improvements in the two jet engine types currently available on the A320 Family – CFM International’s CFM56 and the International Aero Engines V2500 – have resulted in fuel consumption reductions, lower emissions, longer on-wing lifetimes and more cost-efficient maintenance. 

An enhanced cabin configuration developed by Airbus for new production jetliners – as well as for retrofit on existing aircraft – provides additional shoulder-level room for passengers, 10 per cent greater stowage volume for overhead baggage, and a modern ambience using LED lighting, all while making best use of latest technologies, materials and design. As an added bonus, the new cabin also brings a reduction in weight.

Meeting worldwide demand

To meet the A320 Family’s growing worldwide demand, Airbus increased its output to 42 aircraft per month in 2012 – the highest ever rate for any commercial aircraft.

The A320 Family is produced on two Airbus assembly lines in Europe: Toulouse, France and Hamburg, Germany; which have been complemented by an additional facility in China.  Toulouse is home to the initial assembly line, building A320s; Hamburg has responsibility for the A318, A319 and A321; while Tianjin assembles A319s and A320s.   

Tianjin is Airbus’ first assembly facility located outside of Europe, resulting from a joint venture involving Airbus with a Chinese consortium comprising the Tianjin Free Trade Zone (TJFTZ) and China Aviation Industry Corporation (AVIC).

Joining this network will be a new A320 Family production facility in Mobile, Alabama USA, which is to build A319, A320 and A321 jetliners beginning in 2015. 

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Orders & deliveries

A320 family January 2013
Total orders 9142
Total deliveries 5432
In operation 5251

Did you know?

A320 Assembly Line in Tianjin, China
A320 Assembly Line in Tianjin, China
  • A320 Family aircraft are assembled in France, Germany and China.

  • The A320 Final Assembly Line in Toulouse once was the Concorde Assembly Hall.

  • Consisting primarily of aluminium alloy, the A320 is also built with high technology materials such as carbon composites, Kevlar and fiberglass.

  • A320 Family aircraft fly to some of the world's most challenging airports including Himalayan airfields in China, India and Bhutan.

  • 80 per cent of A320 Family operators fly at least two members of the Family.

  • An A320 Family aircraft takes off or lands every 2.5 seconds of every day.