Bangalore. 15 February 2023. It rained order for Rolls-Royce today at Aero India. The engine maker received an order from Air India for 68 Trent XWB-97 engines, plus options for 20 more. This is the biggest ever order for the Trent XWB-97, which exclusively powers the Airbus A350-1000. Air India has also ordered 12 Trent XWB-84, engines, the sole engine option for the Airbus A350-900.
This is the first time that an Indian airline has ordered the Trent XWB and the deal will make Air India the largest operator of the Trent XWB-97 in the world. Financial details of the order are not being disclosed.
Tufan Erginbilgic, CEO, Rolls-Royce plc, said, “Today’s announcement marks an exciting and truly remarkable occasion for Tata Group and Air India; the size and magnitude of this order reflects the level of their ambition for the future. I congratulate them on taking this bold step towards becoming one of the world’s greatest airlines and I would like to thank them for putting their trust in Rolls-Royce to power them on this journey. Air India is the first Indian airline to order the Trent XWB and the size of the commitment, including options, will make them the biggest operator of the Trent XWB-97 in the world. With a dynamic and growing aviation industry, India is a strategically important market for us and we look forward to working with Air India as they connect their passengers across global communities and cultures.”
The Trent XWB will support Tata Group and Air India’s ambitious growth plans for the airline, providing reliability, flexibility and efficiency to its fleet as it takes on ultra-long-range routes between India and the US. The choice of the latest generation of Rolls-Royce engines also reflects Tata Group’s vision for Air India to become the world’s most technologically advanced airline, with a focus on service, competing on the world stage to deliver best-in-class customer experience.
Trent XWB will also allow Air India passengers to travel in the knowledge they have chosen the most sustainable long-haul aviation option available. With a 15% fuel consumption advantage over the first generation of Trent engine, the Trent XWB goes further on less fuel, and offers leading performance and noise levels. It is also ready to operate on a 50% Sustainable Aviation Fuel blend.
Campbell Wilson, CEO, Air India, said, “We are delighted to commence this partnership with Rolls-Royce, and to have their Trent XWB engines power our new fleet of A350 aircraft. We are confident that they will provide us with the reliability and efficiency consumers expect of today’s leading airlines, and thereby play an important part in Vihaan.AI, Air India’s comprehensive transformation and growth strategy.”
The size of the Air India order reflects the increasing demand for air travel in India, which now has the third biggest airline market in the world and is ranked as the fifth largest economy globally. The rise of aviation has been fuelled by continued business growth, favourable government policies, sustained infrastructure development, rising disposable incomes and the travel aspirations of its young, affluent middle class. Industry forecasts* show that air passenger traffic in India is expected to grow at more than 6% per year and the industry will require more than 400 medium and large aircraft to support demand. This makes India a strategically important market for Rolls-Royce as it represents enormous growth potential for its products and services far into the future.
Rolls-Royce already has long-standing partnerships with the Tata Group. These include a strong supply chain commitment with Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) for the manufacture of a significant number of parts for the Trent XWB engine in India, as well as several high-precision components for other Rolls-Royce civil aerospace engines. In addition, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) provides engineering services, particularly to support our digital engineering and data innovation teams in India.
Rolls-Royce has a rich history of partnership with India, spanning 90 years, starting with power for the first commercial aircraft of Tata Aviation in 1932. Today over 750 engines provide Mission Critical Power to the Indian Armed Forces. The company continues to develop its ecosystem of strategic partners, suppliers, diverse talent, digital solutions and service capabilities in India. The new order from Air India will further build on Rolls-Royce’s presence in the country, extending our partnership for decades to come.