Gol announced on Tuesday a review in its fleet renewal program. As a result, the Brazilian airline will start receiving Boeing 737 MAX jets at a faster pace than expected.
According to the company, by the end of this year the fleet of 737 MAX 8 models will reach 28 aircraft, 18 of them received in the second half. In 2022, Boeing’s most economical and longest-range jet will have another 16 units received by Gol, totaling 44 planes.
The forecast is that in 2025 the 737 MAX 8 will assume the role of Gol’s main aircraft, surpassing the 737-800 NG by two units – there will be 65 MAX jets against 63 -800 NG.
Within four years, the 737-700 fleet will drop from the current 23 aircraft to 12 aircraft. At the same time, the 737 MAX 10, the largest variant of Boeing’s single-aisle jet, will have 10 units delivered.
The result of these changes will mean that Gol will have half of the 150 aircraft in the fleet by 2025 made up of MAX models, which offer 15% less fuel consumption and are 40% quieter than NG jets.
“We are accelerating our fleet transformation plan in anticipation of a strong recovery in travel in the post-pandemic environment,” said Paulo Kakinoff, Gol’s CEO. “The 737 MAX positions Gol more competitively for growth through the expansion of routes and destinations, while also enhancing the Company’s value for all stakeholders through increased efficiency.”
737 NG fleet will still remain in the fleet
Despite the acceleration in plans, the 737 NG will still be present in the Gol fleet in 2030, acknowledged Kakinoff. About 25% of aircraft in service within nine years will be the previous variant of the 737.
To reach the goal of 44 737 MAX 8 by the end of 2022, Gol signed agreements to acquire 28 new aircraft, which will replace 23 737 NG in this period – 15 units will be financed through direct operating leases, nine through sale-leasebacks and four through finance leases.
Currently, Gol’s fleet comprises 127 737 jets – the company adheres to its strategy of using only one aircraft model to reduce maintenance and operating costs. Two 737 MAX 8s have been received by airline in recent weeks, bringing the total for that aircraft to 12 jets.