Largest order in History for Airbus

The A320 is Airbus’ best-selling plane.

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European Airbus A320

Airbus on Tuesday unveiled a mega-order for its planned new eco-conscious A320neo jet, a deal the European aircraft manufacturer is calling the largest in aviation history.

The commitment by Indian low-cost carrier IndiGo for 180 A320s, including 150 of the new A320neos, would have a value at list prices of $15.6 billion (€12 billion) if converted into a firm order, Airbus said.

Airbus says it would be the biggest order in terms of number of jets in aviation history.

The deal won applause from industry analysts.

"It’s a great win," said Joseph Campbell, a New York-based aerospace analyst at Barclays Capital. "It’s just where you’d think it would come from, from one of these emerging, fast-growing markets and a fast-growing airline ... It’s perfect."

IndiGo is the first announced customer for the A320neo, a revamped version of the European aircraft maker’s workhorse jet that Airbus hopes to bring to market in 2016. New features include more fuel efficient engines and other technological features with the goal of fuel savings of 15 percent over its predecessor.

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Airbus plant, Toulouse, France

The new aircraft is also being designed with lower carbon emissions and engine noise in mind, Airbus says.

The A320 is Airbus’ best-selling plane. Over 6,800 have been ordered and over 4,500 delivered to more than 310 customers worldwide since the single-aisle plane went into service in 1988. It was designed to compete with Boeing’s 737 family, which has been running since 1968.

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Last modified on 11/01/2011

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