Live from Toulouse: A first look at and in the A220


The A220-300 makes its first pass over Toulouse carrying the new branding
The A220-300 makes its first pass over Toulouse carrying the new branding

Call it the CSeries with a new paint job if you will, but Airbus unveiled the new branding for the A220 line this week in Toulouse and it is a pretty darn nice looking aircraft. With the financial, sales and support backing of the larger manufacturer the new A220 has significant potential to shift the balance of the market. Airbus believes more than 7000 aircraft in the 100-150 seat range will be delivered in the next 20 years, 6000ish of those could be from the A220 family. And the company aims to capture (at least) half of the market.

N.B. – Airbus covered my travel expenses to attend the event; all opinions and photos are my own.

The A220-300 makes its first pass over Toulouse carrying the new branding
The A220-300 makes its first pass over Toulouse carrying the new branding

There are lots of thoughts about what the CSeries/A220 can do in the market (including this piece I wrote for APEX) and JetBlue’s decision this week to order 60 is a good indication that momentum behind the offering is growing as the Farnborough International Airshow looms next week.



The A220-300 parked on stand in Toulouse for the first time
The A220-300 parked on stand in Toulouse for the first time

The A220 is not perfect. Not by any stretch. It presents some interesting challenges to the A319 (yeah, that line is pretty close to dead at this point) and Airbus still comes up empty when airlines are looking for a truly regional frame. But it also is damn pretty, inside and out. Here are some of the images I captured in Toulouse on its first day.



I generally think these flags are silly, but they make for some fun photos.
I generally think these flags are silly, but they make for some fun photos.
Always important to capture a quality tail fin shot!
Always important to capture a quality tail fin shot!

Executives celebrating the A220-300 arrival at Toulouse, along with the test pilots.
Executives celebrating the A220-300 arrival at Toulouse, along with the test pilots.
On board the A220 things look mighty familiar, assuming you've seen the CSeries interior. That's mostly a good thing.
On board the A220 things look mighty familiar, assuming you’ve seen the CSeries interior. That’s mostly a good thing.

On board the A220 things look mighty familiar, assuming you've seen the CSeries interior. That's mostly a good thing.
On board the A220 things look mighty familiar, assuming you’ve seen the CSeries interior. That’s mostly a good thing.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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