Search AeroXplorer
Air India Makes Record-Breaking Aircraft Order

Air India Makes Record-Breaking Aircraft Order


After months of intense negotiations with the aviation industry's two aerospace giants, Airbus and Boeing, Air India has finally reached a deal to purchase nearly 500 aircraft.


Photo: Ethan Sewell | AeroXplorer


Since Indian supergiant TATA Group's full acquisition of Air India in January of 2022, the group has had grand visions for the stagnating flag carrier Air India. In the space of just a year, the mega-conglomerate has announced plans to merge with another large Indian airline, Vistara. This announcement just appears to be the next phase of TATA's plan to create an Indian super airline. 


Boeing - The $34 Billion Order 


On Tuesday, February 14, U.S. President Joe Biden announced Air India's deal with Boeing. It comprises 90 737 MAX jets (including -8, and -10 variants), 20 787 Dreamliners, and 10 of the company's novel 777Xs. The agreement also includes options for 20 additional 787-9s, and 50 737 MAXs should the airline decide it needs to boost its aircraft capacity. When the order goes through, it will become the third largest in the company's history and Boeing's largest in Southeast Asia.


Photo: Peter Cuthbert | AeroXplorer


Commenting on the Boeing half of the order, Campbell Wilson, the CEO, and MD of Air India stated: 


"This acquisition of nearly 300, highly advanced Boeing jets is a core element...[of] the comprehensive transformation and growth strategy we are pursuing at Air India...".




The new 737 MAXs will provide Air India with a new era of route flexibility, allowing the carrier to serve medium-haul destinations that still have sufficient demand for a narrow-body, but not enough to be served by the airline's larger 787s or A321s. 


As for the 777-9X on order, Air India wants extra capacity on its long-haul routes to accompany the already rather small 45-aircraft long-haul fleet. 


Airbus - The Equally Matched Order ($34 billion) 


French President Emmanuel Macron and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi appeared with Airbus to announce the agreement between the two nations' super companies during the press conference. 


The commitment between Air India and Airbus is for 140 A320neos, 70 A321neos, 34 A350-1000s, and six A350-900s. This shows Air India's new shift in the propensity for Airbus wide-bodies as opposed to their preference for Boeing wide-bodies in the past.


Photo: Thomas Tse


Shortly after the announcement of the second landmark order of the day, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, took to Twitter stating that the agreement will "further strengthen the Indian aviation sector and create opportunities in both nations...[This] reflects the robust Indo-French Strategic Partnership." 


Hopefully A Turn-Around 


Air India was founded on the 15th of October 1932 by Indian aviation pioneer J.R.D. Tata. The airline has long since seen its glory days due to mismanagement, bad onboard products that prompted lower passenger numbers, and financial crises. 


This event, possibly the biggest in Air India's 90-year history, will hopefully mark a turning point for the future of the carrier, paving the way for it to become one of the world's newest super-carriers.

Adam Schupak
Adam Schupak is a member of the AeroXplorer staff team, writing articles and contributing to their podcast - Aerospace by AeroXplorer. Adam is interested in anything public transport related and is currently training to become a glider pilot.

Comments (0)

Add Your Comment



NEWS Air India AI Boeing Airbus Deal India France USA


Spirit's Inaugural A321neo Flight Lands in Chicago American low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines recently completed the inaugural revenue service of its brand-new Airbus A321neo. The flight operated on June 7th, 2023 from Fort Lauderdale to Chicago. NEWS READ MORE »
Air India 777 Diverts to Russian City Following Engine Problems On June 6, an Air India Boeing 777-200LR, possibly with U.S. citizens onboard, was forced to divert to a Russian airport after a technical issue with one of the aircraft's engines. NEWS READ MORE »
PGA Tour and LIV Golf Merger: What's in it for Airlines? The PGA Tour and LIV Golf have announced plans to merge into one global golf league after months of legal disputes. The merger is expected to have a significant impact on golf, including in terms of the airlines that currently sponsor the existing leagues. Who will be the league's official airline in the future? NEWS READ MORE »


NEW!AeroXplorer Aviation Sweater Use code AVGEEK for 10% off! BUY NOW