Sales chief Ihssane Mounir said the us planemaker had netted 147 new orders or commitments for the newly launched Boeing 737 MAX 10, created to add more capacity to the medium-haul series to catch up with strong sales of the Airbus A321neo.
Blue Air general manager Gheorghe Racaru said that the company will start preparing to list its shares on the Bucharest Stock Exchange. It received 361 orders for the 188 to 230-passenger aircraft (214 existing orders were switched to the bigger jet, including 100 for United Airlines).
Boeing hasn't officially named the plane but the concept has been been called "797" by industry leaders - the next in the numbering series that debuted 60 years ago with the Boeing 707. Boeing's chief plane salesman Ihssane Mounir said the conversions were partly a reflection of buyers wanting to move quickly to acquire the new plane.
It also won a boost from leasing giant AerCap for its 787 Dreamliner long-range jet, which sits in a category for which demand has been fragile over the past year.
Airbus signed an agreement with Delta Air Lines Inc. for 10 more A321 narrowbodies, while Latin American discount carrier Viva Air committed to take 50 single-aisle jets.
The 737 MAX 10 will be the most profitable single-aisle airplane, offering the lowest seat costs ever.
"In fact, frankly, we look at the demand for really big airplanes and we find it hard to believe that Airbus will be able to deliver the rest of their A380s in backlog", Marketing Vice-President Randy Tinseth said in a briefing.
According to the plane maker, at the end of the first day of the Paris Air Show, the order tally was in excess of $37 billion compared to orders of $12 billion for Airbus. Despite slower growth in some of the hottest aviation markets, Boeing said it continued to see "resilient" demand with a long-term growth trend in traffic of five per cent a year. The two manufacturers have more than 13,000 jets to build in the coming years. Airbus says that more than 1,400 such planes will be delivered, including cargo models. There has been a lot of interest from potential customers (and speculation by the press) in an airplane that can carry about 250 passengers on flights of 4,000 to 5,000 nautical miles. For the last four consecutive years, FlightStats has recognized Copa Airlines as "Best Airline in Latin America" for its on-time performance and service quality, and, for the last two consecutive years, Copa Airlines was recognized as "The World's Second Most On-Time Airline", by OAG. So far, those efforts have yielded no tangible results.