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Lufthansa Regional agrees BAe146/Avro RJ Lease Deals with BAE Systems Regional Aircraft

Travel News Asia 6 April 2005

BAE Systems Regional Aircraft and three of the five airlines within the Lufthansa Regional branded grouping have signed a series of major lease transactions under which 11 further BAe 146-300s are being added together with sale and leaseback extensions on three Avro RJ85s.

This 30 percent BAe 146 capacity increase makes the Lufthansa Regional grouping responsible for the worlds largest BAe 146/Avro RJ fleet with 37 aircraft. It also underscores the BAe 146/Avro RJ as the Lufthansa 100-seat regional jet of choice.

Lufthansa Regional is a new concept unveiled in October 2003 under which five airlines - Lufthansa Cityline, Eurowings, Augsburg Airways and Contact Air of Germany, plus Air Dolomiti of Italy are members of a tighter cooperative group with a steering committee comprising the chiefs of the five airlines together with Werner Knorr as Senior Vice President, representing Lufthansa.

The three separate lease transactions cover:

- The addition of six further BAe 146-300s to the existing Eurowings fleet of eight BAe 146-200/300s. The six aircraft (Msn E3123, E3125, E3158, E3162, E3165 and E3203) will be delivered over a period from mid-April to the beginning of September; 

- A further five BAe 146-300s are being leased by Air Dolomiti which becomes a new BAe 146 operator. The five aircraft (E3129, E3149, E3155, E3169 and E3193) are being delivered from the beginning of April through to mid- September; 

- The sale and leaseback by Regional Aircraft of three RJ85s operated by Lufthansa Cityline. These three aircraft (E2246, E2253 and E2256) bring the number of RJ85s on lease from Regional Aircraft to Lufthansa Cityline to 13. The remaining five aircraft, out of the 18-strong fleet, are owned outright by Lufthansa Cityline.

Paul Stirling, Senior Vice President Asset Management commented, This continued endorsement of the BAe 146/Avro RJ by such a world-leading airline as Lufthansa and its regional carriers underscores our belief that the BAe 146/Avro RJ family will remain highly competitive for many years to come. We believe that new generation regional jets offer marginal improvement and in some cases less capability but with a large increase in financial risk and commitment at a time of considerable market uncertainty in the regional airline sector. We believe that for many airlines the best option very often is to do what Lufthansa has done and expand and re-commit with the BAe 146/Avro RJ.

See other recent news regarding: Travel News Asia, Lufthansa, BAE Systems

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