Air Canada's fleet renewal effort is set to accelerate in the coming months as the airline prepares to take its first 18 Boeing 737 Max 8s and will add six more 787-9s, for a total of 25, by the end of next year.
Two of the Max 8s will be delivered this year and 16 more in the first six months of 2018, Air Canada CFO Michael Rousseau told analysts on a recent earnings call. Some of the new Boeing twins, which will be configured with 169 seats including 16 in business class, will replace A320-family aircraft, with an A320 moving out "two or three months" after Max 8 is introduced, he adds. Most of the A320s being moved out are leased, and the lease expirations coincide with the Max deliveries, he says.
Looking further out, Air Canada will add the remaining 43 Max 8s on order from 2019-2021. Deliveries of Bombardier C Series 300s are scheduled to begin in late 2019, with all 45 aircraft on firm order slated to be in the fleet by 2023. The first 25 will replace mainline Embraer 190s, while the rest will support growth.
Air Canada plans to remove five 767-300s by 2019, including two this year. It has eight A319s marked to leave the fleet—all in 2018.
The carrier's mainline fleet stood at 172 on September 30 and is slated to grow to 183 by 2020.