Qantas Previews New A330 and B717 interiors

Sydney | Published on 29th August 2013 at 9:02

Qantas today previewed the new interiors that will feature on its Airbus A330 fleet from late 2014, including Marc Newson-designed Business Suites for international and domestic customers.

All 30 of Qantas’ A330s will be upgraded with Business Suites in a 1-2-1 layout with fully flat beds and direct aisle access from every seat. Ten A330-300s for Qantas International will feature new Economy seats and 20 A330-200s for Qantas Domestic will see their Economy seats refurbished.

Uniquely, the new Business Class seats can be left in a recline position for take-off and landing, maximising the opportunity for rest – a key point of difference between Qantas and other carriers flying to Asia.

In addition to Panasonic inflight entertainment systems, all A330s will be fitted with Qantas’ Q-Streaming technology, which gives customers access to an extensive entertainment library streamed to devices like iPads.   

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the upgrade would set the airline’s product apart from competitors where its A330s do the bulk of their flying – on key Asian routes and on the domestic east-west market.

“Customers in all parts of the aircraft will notice a significant improvement in comfort when our refreshed A330s start to roll out from the end of 2014,” said Mr Joyce.

“Qantas invented business class and these new Business Suites reflect what we know our customers want, whether they are flying for work or leisure. We’ve created a product that has enough space to dine while working, or if you want to rest, to leave the seat in a recline position from take-off to landing.”

Qantas Creative Designer, Marc Newson, said the new A330 Business Suites were centred on two key principles – maximising comfort and practicality.

“With this business suite we have focused on delivering an intuitive design that meets the needs of our customers travelling in Asia, and creating a cabin experience that provides privacy and a considered space to work, rest or sleep,” said Mr Newson.

B717 Business Class Product

QantasLink today unveiled new interiors for five of its 110- seat Boeing 717 aircraft, to operate on the Sydney-Canberra, Brisbane-Canberra and Melbourne-Canberra routes, with a Business class cabin and iPad entertainment in every seat.

“These dedicated B717 aircraft will offer excellent levels of comfort, entertainment, food and wine, delivering on our commitment to continually improve our service,” said Mr Joyce.

The five new QantasLink B717s, announced in January this year, will be introduced to the domestic fleet during FY14.  Qantas Domestic’s 13 other B717s are also being upgraded with new interiors in an all-economy configuration.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the upgrades were part of the ongoing modernisation of the Qantas Group’s fleet, which has seen 116 new aircraft delivered over the past four years. The Group’s average passenger aircraft age is now 7.9 years, the lowest in two decades.

“Our fleet renewal and cabin refresh program has been vital in the record customer satisfaction ratings at both Qantas Domestic and Qantas International,” Mr Joyce said.  “This is part of keeping that momentum up.”

Qantas Group Fleet Update

“Across the Qantas Group, we are building a global network and the best fleet to serve that network,” Mr Joyce said.

“Our fleet plan is about putting the right aircraft on the right routes and improving the customer experience while reducing our cost base.  As we take delivery of new aircraft, we are retiring older models – giving us a simpler fleet with greater operational efficiency.  At the same time, we retain the flexibility adjust our orders should operating conditions require it.”

The Group confirmed today that:

  • As previously announced, Jetstar’s first B787 is scheduled to be delivered in late September 2013 and will enter commercial service in November.   A further two B787s will be delivered to Jetstar before the end of 2013.
  • With the transfer of A330s to Qantas Domestic as Jetstar’s B787s arrive, and the growing proportion of domestic services being operated by Boeing 737-800s, all Qantas’ Boeing 767-300s will be retired by mid-2015.
  • Qantas Domestic will receive four new B737-800s in FY14.  Five additional B737-800 orders, announced in February 2013, will arrive in FY15.  The last Qantas Domestic B737-400s will be retired in FY14.
  • As announced in January 2013, Qantas Link will take delivery of three additional 74-seat Bombardier Q400 aircraft to start arriving from the first half of FY14 to pursue growth opportunities in regional markets.
  • Two Boeing 747s will be retired in FY14 as a result of Qantas International’s withdrawal from the loss-making Frankfurt route. This follows the reconfiguration of nine B747s and all 12 of Qantas International’s A380s to improve the economics of its long-haul fleet.

The A330 reconfiguration program and other fleet initiatives are included the Qantas Group’s existing capital expenditure forecasts of $1.2 billion in FY14 and $1.5 billion in FY15.

“Thanks to the investment we have already made in our fleet, we have been able to reduce capital expenditure significantly, in keeping with our commitment to prudent financial management,” Mr Joyce said.

“With 50 Dreamliner options and purchase rights available from 2016, there is considerable scope for the Group to invest in growth as needed once the Qantas International turnaround is complete and our targets have been met.”

Click here to view a Qantas B717 product fact sheet.

Click here to view a Qantas A330 product fact sheet.