Kazakh airline Air Astana has revealed that it will withdraw its five Embraer E190-E2s from service from 2024, according to Simple Flying.
The aircraft were received between 2018 and 2019 through leasing with AerCap, which transferred the planes to Azorra Aviation last year.
According to Peter Foster, CEO of the carrier, the E2s will be replaced by A320 jets, with greater capacity.
Foster justified the decision by stating that Air Astana prefers to operate on lower demand routes with a more capable aircraft, with 180 seats – the E190-E2 is configured with 108 seats in two classes.
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In addition to the five Embraer aircraft, Air Astana has 21 jets from the A320 family, most of which are the A321neo, in addition to three Boeing 767-300 widebodies that will be replaced by 787 Dreamliners.
Air Astana has not been a satisfied customer with the E2. In 2021, the airline filed a lawsuit in the US asking for compensation of US$ 11.9 million from Embraer for alleged aircraft failures.
According to the company at the time, the E190-E2 would be unsafe, which forced it to keep them on the ground for long periods.
Among the defects reported were failures in the anti-icing systems on the wings, problems with cabin pressurization that led to the activation of oxygen masks, smoke alerts in the cabin, failure of the hydraulic pump, changes in altitude without crew intervention and failures in the activation of the slats on six occasions.
Embraer, however, categorically denied the allegations. Air Astana was the only operator to report the problems with the E2s. The two companies reportedly reached an agreement later.
The E190-E2 variant has a capacity of 114 seats and accumulates 18 aircraft delivered to airlines such as Helvetic Airways and Widerøe, in addition to an aircraft for VIP use.