Most of us love to fly in brand-new aircraft! The latest generation of commercial airplanes represents a significant leap forward in terms of safety, technology, sustainability, and passenger experience. With continuous innovation driving the industry forward, air travel is poised to become safer, more efficient, and more enjoyable than ever before.
As airlines and manufacturers continue to push the boundaries of what’s possible, the future of aviation looks brighter than ever. As new airplanes are more efficient and economical airlines often update their fleet with new aircraft over time in order to improve their service and profit margin. Here is a look at the some of the India’s latest commercial passenger planes.
1. Airbus A350-941 of Air India
Airbus A350-900 with the registration VT-JRA is the Air India’s latest aircraft to join its fleet. The VT-JRA is also the India’s first A350 aircraft. The new aircraft is first of the 20 Airbus A350-900 aircraft ordered by Air India last year. Five more are scheduled to be delivered by March 2024.
Air India’s A350-900 aircraft comes in a three-class cabin configuration with 316 seats designed by Collins Aerospace: 28 private Business Class suites with full-flat beds, 24 Premium Economy seats with extra legroom and multiple other differentiating features, and 264 spacious Economy Class seats. All seats on the aircraft feature the latest-generation Panasonic eX3 in-flight entertainment system and HD screens.
Initially, Air India will operate the new A350-900 domestically for crew familiarisation, followed by longer-haul flying to destinations across the continents. The aircraft had started its commercial service on Jan 22, 2024.
2. Airbus A320-251N
Airbus A320-251N is the most popular choice among the Indian airlines. In a span of two months, Airbus has delivered over 12 new A320-251N in India. Out of which, 6 has been delivered to Indigo (VT-IQP, VT-IQN, VT-IQL, VT-IQM, VT-IQO and VT-IQJ), 3 to Air India (VT-RTU, VT-RTI and VT-RTT) and 3 to Vistara (VT-TQV, VT-TQU and V-TQT). Among these A320-251N, four of them are yet to enter into commercial service (VT-IQP, VT-IQN, VT-RTU and VT-RTT).
The Airbus A320 Family is the world’s best-selling single aisle product line with nearly 18,000 orders to date and over 11,500 aircraft delivered to 300 plus customers and operators worldwide. With over 216 aircraft, IndiGo is the largest operator of Airbus A320 aircraft in India.
3. ATR 72-600 of IndiGo
The ATR 72 is a twin-engine turboprop, short-haul regional airliner. Recently, Indigo has started commercial service of 2 new ATR 72-600 aircraft with registration number VT-IRM and VT-IRL respectively. The 69-78 seater is powered by two Pratt & Whitney 127M engine, which produces maximum power of 2,750 HP per engine at takeoff. ATR 72 can travel upto a distance of 1,665 km (900 nautical miles) with full passenger load. At present, IndiGo has 43 ATR 72-600 in its fleet.
4. Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner of Vistara
VT-TSH and VT-IRL of Vistara are the India’s latest Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft. Vistara currently has six 787 Dreamliner in its fleet. The airline will receive its final Boeing 787 wide-body jet by March or April end. Vistara was the India’s first airline to fly Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.
The Vistara 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft has 299 seats in a three-class cabin configuration. Flyers on the Vistara Dreamliner have the option to choose from Economy, Premium Economy and Business class. Vistara’s Dreamliner aircraft has lie-flat business class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. The Premium Economy cabin comes with a seating configuration of 2-3-2. The aircraft also has onboard WiFi Internet connectivity, 3G Mobile Data through GSM and GPRS, MMS and SMS. The 3D Flight Path Map provides flyers with a superior map experience and flyers will also have access to ‘Flight Tracker’.
5. Boeing 737 MAX 8
TC-MKC of Spicejet, VT-YAU and VT-YAV of Akasa Air are the latest Boeing 737-8 MAX aircraft operated in India. Currently, few 787 MAX-9 aircraft are been grounded globally for inspection due to cabin panel issue occurred on January 5, involving a new Alaska Airlines’ 737 MAX-9 aircraft. It is to be noted that none of the Indian airlines has 737-9 MAX aircraft in its fleet. Presently, 44 Boeing 737 MAX 8 are being operated in India. Among which Akasa Air is the largest operator with 22 aircrafts, followed by SpiceJet with 13 and Air India Express with 9 aircraft. Last week Akasa Air had ordered 150 additional Boeing 737 MAX aircrafts at WINGS India 2024.