Swissair Rejects U.S. Planes in Favor of European Airbus
ZURICH, Switzerland (AP) _ Switzerland’s flag carrier Swissair on Friday announced it will buy 26 new aircraft made by the European Airbus consortium in preference to ones made by McDonnell Douglas Corp.
The company said it had taken out options on an additional 26 Airbus machines to replace its aging short-haul fleet of MD-81s.
A statement said the investment was worth the equivalent of about $1.8 billion, the largest in Swissair’s 60-year history.
The statement said the firm order consisted of seven A320s, with a 133-seat capacity, and nineteen 170-seat A321s. It said the first of these would be delivered in January 1995 and the last in March 1998.
The company described the Airbus aircraft as ″particularly easy on the environment.″
Airbus is a consortium of Aerospatiale of France, Messerschmitt-Boelkow- Blohm of West Germany, British Aerospace and Construcciones Aeronauticas of Spain.
The decision was made at a Swissair board meeting in Zurich.
Also at the meeting, Hannes Goetz, chief executive of the Swiss company Georg Fischer AG, was named as Swissair’s new board chairman.
The appointment, which must be approved by the shareholders, would become effective in April 1992 when current chairman Armin Baltensweiler is due to retire.