Oneworld carrier Finnair has felt a secondary impact from technical glitches on Pratt & Whitney’s PW1100G Airbus A320neo engine, saying those issues have impacted the supply of spare engines for the A320ceo, causing flight delays and cancelations.
“The engine manufacturers have had issues with their new-technology engines. Even though we are using current engines, that has caused challenges for us in our spare-engine supply and therefore we had some [flight] cancelations,” Finnair CFO and interim CEO Pekka Vähähyyppä said, speaking on the airline’s financial results webcast on Oct. 25.
“During the third quarter, the situation was challenging, but right now it has improved,” he added.
According to Aviation Week’s AWIN database, Helsinki-based Finnair operates a mainline fleet of 11 Airbus A350s, nine A330s, 19 A321s, 10 A320s and eight A319s.
“There’s no issues from the engine side on our widebodies – no issues on spare engines - it’s only on the A320s,” Finnair VP and group treasurer Christine Rovelli said.
She explained that A320ceo operators with A320neos on order have continued to operate their A320ceos longer than planned, because of the A320neo engine glitches.
“All of a sudden, they’re holding onto these aircraft longer and they are starting to have to go through heavy maintenance on the engines. That has put pressure on the spare-engine supply in the market and that has affected us, because we would have used those spare engines as well. We are planning on operating our narrowbodies for a good while longer, so the supply in the market that we had counted on didn’t quite turn out the way we’d hoped.”
Finnair is planning to continue operating its 37 mid-life A320ceos until the end of their service life, although the airline is considering its replacement options with deliveries planned for around the start of the next decade.