Start-up SaudiGulf Airlines will cancel a $1.46 billion order for 16 Airbus SE A220 aircraft, formerly known as the Bombardier CSeries, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.
The purchase has been replaced with one for 10 Airbus A320neo jets announced in November said the people, who asked not be named because the matter is confidential. The switch wasn’t disclosed when the new deal was revealed.
SaudiGulf, which began flying in 2016 and serves nine destinations from Dammam on the Arabian Gulf, didn’t respond to messages seeking comment. Airbus said it never comments on contractual discussions.
The CSeries was competing with the A320 when SaudiGulf placed its order for the Canadian aircraft in 2014, but after struggling for sales the programme was sold to Airbus in a transaction that closed last year.
The Mideast carrier’s current fleet includes earlier-generation A320s, and the replacement deal is less costly at $1.11 billion, based on list prices.
While SaudiGulf is getting fewer planes, the A320 is bigger, with 165 seats in a two-class layout versus 141 for the A220-300, according to Airbus’s website.
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