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South African Airways Looking to Sell its Airbus A340s
South African Airways is putting up some of its widebody Airbus A340-600 aircraft up for sale in order to accommodate some of the newer Airbus A350-900s being added to its fleet. The Johannesburg-based airline has found it necessary to sell its older Airbus aircraft to accommodate the new models with superior features such as a quieter cabin, more extra-legroom seats in economy class and lie-flat beds in business class.
The airline has put on the market nine of the widebody aircraft — five Airbus A340-300s and four Airbus A340-600s. The closing date for the tender was Jan. 30, 2020, according to a Flightglobal report. A buyer has not been announced yet, however,
“The decision to sell the aircraft has nothing to do with the business rescue process. For some time we had planned to replace our four-engine aircraft with new generation and more efficient aircraft as part of our fleet renewal program,” Ramasia said.
South African Airways had previously planned to retire its A340s after receiving five A330-300s in late 2017, but due to the operational fleet undergoing maintenance, the retirement of the aircraft was postponed.
The A340s used to operate on South African Airways’ regional and international routes, which will now be flown by the A330s and A350-900s. Remaining Airbus A340s are now likely to be retired in 2021.
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