Delta Orders 40 Bombardier CRJ900 Jets To Replace Smaller CRJ200s
Delta Air Lines announced Thursday that it had placed a firm order with Bombardier for 40 CRJ900 regional jets in a fleet restructuring move aimed at phasing out its smallest, least efficient jets.
The 76-seat CRJ900 will replace the 50-seat CRJ200 on a capacity neutral basis, Delta said. For every two new CRJ900s added, three CRJ200s will be removed from the fleet while Delta offers the same number of available seats. A total of 60 CRJ200s will be phased out with the assistance of Bombardier, which likely means they will take them back and try to find new homes for them.
“The economics and customer features of the Bombardier CRJ900 made it the right aircraft to add to our Delta Connection fleet,” said Delta President Ed Bastian in a statement. “Combined with the removal of 50-seat aircraft, this opportunity bolsters our ongoing fleet restructuring program to remove less efficient, smaller regional aircraft from the system.”
Delta currently operates 101 CRJ900s through regional affiliates such as SkyWest. First deliveries of this new batch are expected in the second half of 2013. The timing will roughly coincide with early deliveries of 88 former AirTranBoeing 717-200s from Southwest and 100 new 737-900ERs.
Options for up to 30 more CRJ900s are also included in the new order.
Each new plane will be fitted with 12 First Class seats, 12 Economy Comfort (premium economy) seats and 52 seats in Economy. All seats will be laid out in a 2×2 configuration.