JetBlue order worth up to $6 billion

Budget airline JetBlue Airways has today placed an order worth up to $6 billion, with options, for 100 new Embraer 190 aircraft.

JetBlue Airways announced today that it has placed an order for 100 new Embraer 190 aircraft, with options for an additional 100 new aircraft. Embraer values the firm contract at $3 billion, with a potential value of $6 billion if all options are exercised.

The announcement makes JetBlue the launch customer of the all-new 100-seat Embraer 190 aircraft.

The Embraer 190 is the manufacturer’s newest model in a family of mid-sized aircraft targeting the 70 to110-seat market. This family incorporates features such as integrated avionics, fly-by-wire flight controls, and more efficient, environmentally friendly GE engines.

JetBlue plans to take delivery of the first seven Embraer aircraft in 2005, with the remainder of the order expected to be delivered through 2011 at a rate of approximately 18 per year. Options begin in 2011.

With this new Embraer order and the low-cost airline’s current fleet of 42 Airbus A320 aircraft plus orders and options for future Airbus deliveries, JetBlue’s fleet could grow to as many as 290 aircraft by the end of 2011. Lease financing has been arranged for the first 30 Embraer 190 aircraft deliveries.