Today, Viva Aerobus announced the signing of an MoU for 90 Airbus A321neo aircraft. The negotiations between Airbus and the Mexican ultra-low-cost carrier were first revealed a few weeks ago by Reuters.
Viva Aerobus’ new MoU comes a couple of weeks after Volaris, its main ULCC rival in Mexico, also increased its order with the European manufacturer. As it stands today, Viva Aerobus could still receive about 115 aircraft in the coming years, all A321neo. Meanwhile, Volaris still has an unfilled order for 142 aircraft, mostly A321neo, although some A320neo are also in the mix (which could be upgraded for the bigger A321neo).
Following the COVID-19 pandemic, Viva Aerobus and Volaris have recorded incredible two-digit growths versus 2019 traffic numbers, flying high fueled by a robust domestic market, the bankruptcy of two rival companies (Interjet in 2020 and Aeromar in 2023), and new aircraft arrivals.
Roberto Alcantara, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Grupo Viva Aerobus, said:
“This agreement demonstrates the strength of our company and the confidence and commitment we have as shareholders and employees of Viva Aerobus with our country to continue promoting competitiveness, connectivity, and tourism, with quality air transportation accessible to all.”
Meanwhile, Juan Carlos Zuazua, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Viva Aerobus, said the A321neo, with their 240 seats, will allow the company to continue improving its operational productivity and fuel efficiency, reducing costs. “Simultaneously, we will be able to make progress in reducing carbon emissions per passenger to continue to accredit ourselves as the greenest airline in Mexico,” he added.
Through the new 90 A321neo aircraft, Viva Aerobus will be able to continue its domestic and international growth, the airline said. Moreover, as Mexico is expected to regain its Category 1 certification by the Federal Aviation Administration in the coming months, Viva Aerobus could employ these new planes in routes to the United States and improve its still-not-authorized commercial alliance agreement with Allegiant Air.
Selecting the engine
To power these planes, Viva Aerobus selected Pratt & Whitney GTF engines. These engines use a geared fan technology that allows each part of the engine to spin at optimum speed, providing high levels of fuel efficiency and low greenhouse gas emissions. Zuazua said selecting these engines was a choice made to protect the environment.
In a separate press release, Pratt & Whitney announced the Viva Aerobus deal as a firm order and said the delivery will start in 2027.
Daniel Martínez Garbuno is a Mexican journalist. He has specialized in the air industry working mainly for A21, a Mexican media outlet focused entirely on the aviation world. He has also published on other sites like Simple Flying, Roads & Kingdoms, Proceso, El Economista, Buzos de la Noticia, Contenido, and Notimex.