Qantas to purchase 36 Airbus A321XLR aircraft

The new Airbus A321XLR in Qantas livery
The new Airbus A321XLR in Qantas livery Photo credit: Airbus.

Qantas Airways has put its money where its mouth is in its support of the ultra-long-range A321 from Airbus by agreeing to purchase 36 of them.

The order includes modifying its current order for 26 A320neos for the newer A321XLR.

This includes the conversion of 26 existing A320neo Family orders plus a new firm order for 10 A321XLRs.

The new aircraft, which can fly further and with less fuel, will allow both Qantas and its low-cost carrier Jetstar to extend their networks and fleet flexibility. 

Qantas to purchase 36 Airbus A321XLR aircraft
Photo credit: Newshub.

From 2023, the A321XLR will deliver an unprecedented extra-long range (XLR) of up to 8700 kilometres - that's 15 percent more than the A321LR. It also uses 30 percent less fuel per seat compared with the previous generation of the aircraft.

The new aircraft will allow single aisle travel from Australia to places such as Japan and South-East Asia.

The aircraft will be delivered with Qantas' new cabin design which will include business and economy classes.

The purchase agreement was made at the Paris Air Show, on the same day as American Airlines purchasing 50 of the A321XLR aircraft from Airbus. That's approximately US$15 billion worth of aircraft sold in one day.