Indian private carrier Jet Airways is to acquire ten Airbus A330-200s/-300s and has taken options on ten more, becoming a new client for the popular A330/A340 family.

Deliveries are due to begin as early as the first quarter of 2007, but Jet Airways will become the first Indian operator of the Airbus A330 even sooner, in May 2006, when it takes delivery of the first of several aircraft leased from ILFC.

Jet Airways plans to use its Airbus A330s on a mix of domestic, regional and international flights. Each aircraft will seat 226 passengers, with luxurious six-abreast flat-bed seating in business, and a comfortable eight-abreast layout in economy.

“Only the Airbus A330 has the versatility to be economic on short, medium and long-haul services, “ says Jet Airways Chairman Naresh Goyal. “Airbus’ A330 has exceptional cabin comfort and style, modern design and proven reliability, and excellent economics - just what we need as Jet Airways goes global.”

Jet Airways is India’s largest private carrier, and recently became the first in the country to fly the Airbus A330/A340 family by leasing three Airbus A340-300Es, which are already a great success on Mumbai-London flights, and which will shortly inaugurate services from Delhi to London. Cockpit commonality between the A330 and A340 will thus help to ensure a smooth A330 introduction into Jet’s fleet.

“Jet Airways has been instrumental in introducing new standards of passenger service and competition within India, so we take it as a compliment that it has chosen Airbus aircraft as it makes its first major expansion into both widebody aircraft and long-haul services,” says Airbus President and CEO Noël Forgeard. “Our ability to deliver aircraft early will also give Jet Airways the advantage of an early start.”

Currently offering unmatched passenger capacity and range in its class, the Airbus A330 has become the industry standard in the middle of the market - invariably winning favour in airline evaluations of its economics and passenger appeal. The A330 and A340 are also firm favourites in independent passenger surveys, while appealing to the financial community.

Like every other passenger aircraft that Airbus produces today, the A330 and A340 feature a common cockpit, which simplifies and reduces training and which, depending on the mix of different aircraft types, can be worth a saving of as much as one million dollars a year.

The A330/A340 family is the market-leader in its class, with more orders from more customers than any other modern widebody aircraft family. Firm orders for the Airbus A330/A340 family now stand at more than 900 aircraft, with more than 85 customers and operators benefitting from them.

Airbus is a European company with design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK, and Spain. Airbus is an EADS joint company with BAE Systems.