British Airways has taken delivery of the first of seven Airbus A321s that it will operate, adding to the A319s and A320s that it is already flying.

The Airbus A321s will operate on European routes, giving passengers a comfortable and spacious cabin. Each of British Airways’ Airbus A321s seats 194 passengers in a two class layout, and is powered by International Aero Engines V2533-A5s.

“The Airbus A320 Family plays an important role in helping us to deliver a great product, while facing up to the economic challenges of the marketplace,” says Robert Boyle, Director of Commercial Planning, British Airways. “In adding the A321 to our fleet, we will also benefit from crew-commonality across a wider spread of aircraft sizes.”

British Airways became an Airbus operator in 1988, when it began flying A320s, and added A319s to its fleet in 1999. Its franchise operators British Mediterranean Airways and GB Airways both have all-Airbus fleets that include five A321s.

“British Airways enjoys a reputation as one of the world’s leading carriers, and is already a major operator of the Airbus single-aisle family, with some 60 aircraft in its fleet,” says Airbus President and CEO Noël Forgeard. “Adding Airbus A321s will help it to build on the success that it is already achieving, and we look forward to continuing to be a part of its future,” he adds.

Airbus’ A320 family is widely recognised as the benchmark single-aisle aircraft family, and is the preferred choice of both full-service and low-cost carriers. It features the most modern design, the best economics, and the greatest passenger-appeal – as independent passenger surveys testify.

More than 3,250 Airbus A320 Family aircraft have been ordered to date, of which over 2,250 have been delivered. The Airbus A320 Family has more than 175 customers and operators to its credit.

Airbus is an EADS joint Company with BAE Systems.