• Chidozie Uzoezie

Airbus Delays Delivery of First Airbus A320neo

According to airwise, Airbus has pushed back the delivery of its first A320neo aircraft to the start of 2016, missing a goal to hand over the updated jet to its initial customer by the end of 2015.

The A320neo won safety approval in late November, and Airbus said it was working with its development partners to bring the plane into operation.

"All three partners continue working with all efforts and full focus towards bringing the fuel-efficient A320neo into service within the next weeks," Airbus said in a statement, adding that the problem lay with documentation for the delivery, but without giving any further details.

Lufthansa became the first airline due to take delivery of the A320neo earlier this month, after Qatar Airways voiced uncertainty over the performance of its Pratt & Whitney engines.

Lufthansa said it had agreed with Airbus to delay the delivery to the start of 2016 due to "technical complexities".

"Discussions are continuing such that when we deliver the plane, it is truly operational in the Lufthansa fleet," an Airbus spokesman said, adding Airbus hoped to deliver the plane in the first two weeks of January.

Engine maker Pratt & Whitney said it was working closely with Airbus and Lufthansa to resolve "documentation items" with its Geared Turbofan engine, which is powering a new generation of airliners, including Bombardier's CSeries.

Earlier this month, Pratt's parent United Technologies' chief executive Gregory Hayes said that uneven cooling of the engine after flight required a special restart procedure under some circumstances.

Hayes said software and hardware fixes were in the works and would likely be implemented by February.

On Wednesday, Pratt spokeswoman Sara Banda said the company had plans to incorporate "software refinements and minor hardware modifications" in production engines starting in the second quarter of 2016.

#Airbus #A320neo #Lufthansa

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