Northwest Airlines to acquire Airbus

Northwest Airlines is to acquire 24 Airbus A330-300 aircraft, 20 Boeing B757-300 aircraft, two B747-400s and six A319s.

Deliveries of the A330s will begin in 2003 and continue through 2006; deliveries of the B757s will begin in 2002 and continue through 2004; the A319s and B747s will be delivered in 2002.

The A330s will be used in Northwest’s trans-Atlantic operations, the B757s and A319s in its domestic system and the B747s will be used in the airline’s Pacific division. Northwest will retire its DC10-40 fleet beginning in 2002 and continuing through 2004. The airline also currently operates 24 DC10-30s, primarily in its trans-Atlantic system, and plans to retire some of those aircraft and to transition the remainder to its domestic system.

Northwest will record a non-recurring pre-tax impairment charge of $125 million in the 4th quarter of 2000 to write down the retired aircraft and related spare parts to their estimated fair market value.

The announcement includes the reconfirmation and rescheduling of existing aircraft orders with The Boeing Company and Airbus Industrie.

Specifically, the Company’s previous commitment to acquire 16 A330 aircraft remains outstanding but is cancellable by Northwest. As part of the Company’s B757-300 order, the Company’s previous commitment to acquire B757-200 aircraft beginning in 2006 has been cancelled.

Two of the B757-300 order are subject to reconfirmation and Northwest has the right to convert some of its later B757-300 deliveries to 757-200 aircraft.