Taiwan’s Starlux firms A350 order

Aviation

Airbus”s new A350-1000 aircraft arrived in Taiwan today on its latest stop on a world tour. New Taiwanese Starlux Airlines founder and former EVA Airways chairman Chang Kuo-wei was on the plane”s flight in from Incheon International Airport. The new twin-aisle A350-1000 is 7 meters longer than the A350-900 and has 41 more seats, giving it a capacity of 366 passengers. Airbus”s main targets in Taiwan for the new aircraft are China Airlines and the new StarLux, which is expected to take to the skies in 2020.

Starlux Airlines has firmed the agreement for 17 Airbus A350s previously unveiled during last year’s Farnborough air show.

Starlux is taking 12 A350-1000s and five A350-900s. All the twinjets are exclusively powered by Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines.

The carrier plans to deploy these aircraft on its long-haul services from Taipei to Europe and North America, as well as certain destinations in the Asia-Pacific region, says the airframer.

Starlux founder KW Chang says the range, low operating costs and passenger comfort were “key factors” in the airline’s decision to select the A350.

“We are positive that with the [A350], we will be able to spread our wings to further destinations, bringing our best-in-class services to more people over the world in the near future,” he adds.

Starlux’s agreement will provide a lift to Airbus order figures for the year so far, which have suffered from the cancellation of over 40 A350s intended for Etihad Airways as well as the fallout from the decision to close the A380 programme.