Boeing
Boeing737 Max8 800

737 MAX Orders Rise Again for Boeing

May 26, 2021
The jet-builder booked another new order for its narrow-body jet series from SMBC Aviation Capital, a leasing firm, bringing the current year’s order to 205 new aircraft.

An aircraft-leasing firm, SMBC Aviation Capital, ordered 14 more Boeing 737 MAX-8 jets for its portfolio, according to the OEM, which linked the contract to airlines’ preparations for a recovery after the 2020 downturn in commercial and leisure travel. One aviation-sector analyst claimed that the number of 737 MAX flights rose from 4,027 in March to 5,950 in May 2021.

Boeing did not indicate the value of the order, which could be as much as $1.7 billion based on the published book value of the 737 MAX-8.

Dublin-headquartered SMBC Aviation Capital is one of the largest aircraft-leasing groups in the world, with a portfolio of 496 aircraft leased to 85 airlines in 36 countries.

"We are pleased to have concluded an agreement with Boeing for the purchase of 14 low-cost carrier configured 737 MAX aircraft which is an aircraft we are seeing increased customer demand for following its successful return to service," stated Peter Barrett, CEO of SMBC Aviation Capital.

With the new order SMBC will be raising the number of 737 MAX jets in its portfolio to 121 aircraft.

The 737 MAX-8 was the first variant of the twin-engine, narrow-body jet series, with seating for 178 to 200 passengers. Boeing noted it is designed to offer fuel efficiency, reliability, and flexibility for the single-aisle aircraft sector, and has a range of 3,550 nautical miles so it’s available for numerous direct routes. It underscored that the 737 MAX brings reduced fuel consumption and 16% lower CO2 emissions than . The 737-8 can fly 3,550 nautical miles – about 600 miles farther than its predecessor – allowing airlines to offer more direct routes for passengers. Compared to the airplanes it replaces, the 737-8 also delivers superior efficiency, reducing fuel use and CO2 emissions by 16% compared to earlier models, and with lower operating costs.

After an 18-month grounding as a result of two fatal accidents, Boeing has had 771 orders for 737 MAX series cancelled since 2019, though it continues to manage a backlog of more than 4,000 orders for new jets. Since the 737 MAX was recertified late last year, Boeing has received 205 new orders, including orders from Alaska Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines.

Boeing is working through a backlog of completed 737 MAX jets but plans to increase its production rate from less than 10 per month currently to 31 jets/month by Q1 2022 – and reportedly the company hopes to raise the rate further to 42 jets/month by late 2022.

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