Air France-KLM confirms order for four A350 freighters

Air France-KLM has finalised an order with Airbus for four A350F freighters, converting a Letter of Intent (LoI) signed in December 2021, with purchase rights for an additional 4 aircraft.

The aircraft will be operated by Air France and be based at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport.

Air France-KLM said the decision to convert the order was made “in the context of a steady and sustainable growth of demand for air cargo”. The new aircraft will increase Air France’s cargo capacity, which currently consists of two 777Fs, supplementing the belly capacity of the airline’s 100+ widebody passenger aircraft.

The order comes with full substitution rights to Airbus A350 passenger aircraft, which constitute the new flagship of Air France’s long-haul fleet. The airline currently operates 15 of the 38 aircraft of the type on order.

“This order embodies Air France-KLM’s determination to strengthen its position on the buoyant cargo business,” said Air France-KLM’s CEO Benjamin Smith. “The Airbus A350 passenger version has been instrumental to the improvement of our economic and environmental performance, while proving to be a passenger’s favourite.

“We are thrilled to be among the launch customers of its freighter version, which will significantly increase our capacity and give us the means to continue to provide the best service to our customers around the world.”

Airbus’ chief commercial officer and head of Airbus International Christian Scherer commented: “Airlines now have a choice, and we salute Air France joining those going for the A350F’s step change in efficiency and sustainability for the cargo operations of the future. We are gratified by the wave of early adopters who, like Air France, see the economics and environmental signature of the A350s as standing out versus alternatives, past, existing and future.”

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