Boeing launched the newest member of the 737 MAX family today with a commitment from Ryanair for 100 airplanes. Europe’s leading low-cost carrier will be the first airline to operate the 737 MAX 200, a variant based on the 737 MAX 8 that can accommodate up to 200 seats. In addition to the commitment, valued at $11 billion at current list prices, Ryanair has options to purchase another 100 737 MAX 200s.
Ryanair becomes the lead customer for this new aircraft which for Ryanair will feature 197 new seats (8 more than Ryanair’s existing 737-800s) with a pitch of 30 inches and new CFM LEAP-1B engines.
Boeing developed the 737 MAX 200 in response to the needs of the fast growing low-cost sector, which is forecasted to account for 35 percent of single-aisle airline capacity by 2033. While the heart of the single-aisle market will remain at 160 seats, the 737 MAX 200 will provide carriers like Ryanair with up to 11 more seats of potential revenue and up to 5 percent lower operating costs than the 737 MAX 8, driving economic growth and increasing access to air travel.
Based on the 737 MAX 8 airframe, the 737 MAX 200 can accommodate up to 200 seats by incorporating a mid-exit door increasing the exit limit. The airframe is 2.2 meters longer than the A320neo, giving customers more flexibility and space in the cabin, and offering a better solution at both the heart of the single-aisle market (160 seats) and at maximum passenger configurations.
Ryanair enters into this new aircraft agreement, the day before it takes delivery of the first of 180 new Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The current 180 aircraft order will see Ryanair’s fleet grow from 304 to 420 (allowing for lease returns), and traffic rise from 82m last year to over 112m by 2019. Becoming the lead operator for the Boeing 737 MAX 200 aircraft secures Ryanair’s future growth during the period 2019 to 2024 in which Ryanair’s fleet will rise to 520 aircraft (allowing for sales and lease returns) while traffic almost doubles from 82m in FY2014 to 150m passengers p.a. by FY2024.