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EVA Air Orders A350-1000s and A321neos
EVA becomes the third airline in Taiwan to order the A350 and the A321neos set the stage for Airbus domination in Taiwan's single-aisle market.
European manufacturer Airbus has started 2024 with a major commercial order. Taiwanese carrier EVA Air has selected the Airbus A350-1000 and A321neo for its fleet renewal. The order contains 18 long-haul A350-1000s and 15 A321neos for regional flying.
The order was first announced on Nov. 7, 2023 and was finalized on January 9. The firm orders will pave the way for EVA Air to replace its aging long-haul and regional aircraft and introduce more efficient jets with less emissions and fuel consumption. EVA Air will also become Taiwan’s third A350 operator, an impressive feat for Airbus and a testament to the type’s success.
The new Airbus aircraft are expected to replace EVA’s aging Boeing 777-300ERs on high-density connections in Asia and intercontinental routes, while the new narrowbodies will take the places of the existing fleet of A321-200s flown by EVA Air and previously its subsidiary UNI Air on domestic and regional flights.
Commenting on the new order, Clay Sun, President of EVA Air, said: “We have selected the Airbus aircraft following a thorough evaluation of the various models in each market segment. In both size categories we have selected the most modern and fuel efficient types, that offer the highest levels of passenger comfort.”
Replacing the 777-300ER
According to planespotters.net, EVA currently operates 34 777-300ERs with an average of 10.8 years, and all with configuration suitable for long-haul flying. The type is currently the backbone for EVA’s intercontinental network, flying to EVA’s eight destinations across the United States and to Toronto and Vancouver.
It is expected that the new A350-1000s will fly on routes that the 777-300ERs currently fly, though the firm order for 18 of the type is not enough to replace the current 777 fleet, which stands at 34.
The 777-300ERs also fly to destinations in Europe, including Paris, London, and Amsterdam. Some popular routes within Asia see the deployment of the type as well with the type flying on multiple daily flights to Singapore, Bangkok, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.
EVA Fleet Renewal
EVA is also an operator of Boeing’s Dreamliners, operating a total of 15 787s with 11 of the 787-10 variant and four being the 787-9. Ten more Dreamliners will eventually join its fleet and these airplanes will replace the A330s, which are set to be phased out by 2029.
The A321neos will replace EVA Air’s A321s, which have an average age of 8.6 years. The relatively young fleet flies on domestic routes within Taiwan and many destinations to Mainland China, Japan, South Korea, and Southeast Asia. The order is expected to be delivered progressively starting from a later date.
EVA will have 43 firm orders to be delivered from Airbus and Boeing after the latest deal with Airbus. The airline currently has a fleet of 79 passenger jets in 2024 and an average age of 8.6 years.
Not Taiwan’s First A350 Operator
EVA Air’s rival in Taiwan, China Airlines, has operated A350-900s for seven years and has a fleet of 15 at the time of writing, with one more expected to join. China Airlines also recently placed an order for its fleet renewal, though with Boeing for 24 Dreamliners.
The rising startup, Starlux, on the other hand, has orders for both the A350-1000 and A350-900. A total of 18 A350s will be delivered to the airline with four already delivered and used on transpacific flights to Los Angeles and San Francisco.
A320neo Family Dominates Taiwan Market
Airbus’ A321neo has seen incredible success in Taiwan in recent years. China Airlines will have a fleet of 25 A321neos and replace the 737-800s with the new Airbus jets. Starlux already operates 13 of the type with more coming and EVA will take at least 15 of the type.
Boeing’s 737 MAX family currently has zero orders in Taiwan. Out of the 66 single-aisle jets in Taiwan in service in 2024, 10 are Boeing 737s, or 15% of the market. With the new orders for the A320neos piling up, Boeing’s market share is expected to dip to zero while Airbus dominates.
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