Air Canada has become the second Canadian operator of the Boeing 737 MAX 8, receiving its first aircraft, C-FTJV (c/n 61207), just weeks after WestJet began using the aircraft. Its inaugural 737 MAX revenue flight was expected later in November following a period of certification and crew training.
The airline will receive a second 737 MAX, C-FSCY (c/n 61208) in November followed by a further 16 by June 2018, with the balance of the airline’s original 61-aircraft order due by 2021. This order split the variants at 33 737 MAX 8s and 28 737 MAX 9s, but recent growth in passenger numbers could lead to earlier-thananticipated conversions of purchase options to firm orders for up to 48 more 737 MAXs. Additionally, options for 30 additional Bombardier CS300 aircraft above the firm orders for 45 could be converted to firm purchases sooner than expected, according to Air Canada.
Deliveries of the first C Series jets to Air Canada are slated from late 2019 to 2022. The 737 MAX 8s will replace the Airbus A320, which has been with the airline since 1990 and the 737 MAX 9s will supplant the Airbus A321, while the C Series will replace the Airbus A319s and Embraer 190s. Air Canada intends to deploy the 737 MAX on domestic and direct transatlantic services to Shannon and Dublin from Toronto and Montreal starting in summer 2018. Air Canada’s Vice-President of Global Sales Duncan Bureau said the 737 MAX’s range is: “something we haven’t had in a narrowbody aircraft of that size. We are extremely pleased with the capability of the aircraft. The overall economics are significantly better and the  MAX allows us more versatility.” Andrew H Cline