Airbus closed the sale of two A330-900neo to the small Air Côte d’Ivoire, the national airline of the African country. The aircraft will be the first widebodies for the carrier, which has operated for 10 years and replaced Air Ivoire, which went bankrupt in 2011.
Currently, the Air Côte d’Ivoire fleet comprises five Airbus jets (two A319, two A320 and one A320neo) and four Dash 8-400 turboprops. The airline, however, had more planes, including an Embraer E170, between 2013 and 2015, which was leased from HOP!, France.
With the two A330neos, Air Côte d’Ivoire will be able to establish its first long-haul routes, thanks to the aircraft’s range of up to 7,200 nm (13,300 km).
Neither Airbus nor Air Côte d’Ivoire has revealed when the two widebodies will be delivered. According to the European manufacturer, there were 275 firm orders for the A330neo, from 20 customers worldwide.
Of these, only 11 aircraft are of the A330-800 variant, with lower passenger capacity, but with greater autonomy. The model’s customers are Garuda Indonesia (four planes), Kuwait Airways (4) Uganda Airlines (2) and Air Greenland, which has ordered just one jet and it should be delivered soon.