American Airlines jet with new logo flies into Tulsa
BY D.R. STEWART World Staff Writer
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
1/23/13 at 7:15 AM
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Times are changing at American Airlines.
If the past 14 months of American's bankruptcy restructuring haven't made it apparent, the fading away of its signature silver aluminum birds are proof a new company is being born, company officials said.
American workers and executives at the company's Tulsa Maintenance & Engineering Center on Tuesday got a sneak peek at the company's new aircraft livery and paint scheme when the company's latest addition to its fleet, a Boeing 737-800, flew into Tulsa International Airport and taxied to American's Hangar 2.
"Today is a very exciting day as we introduce this aircraft in Tulsa," said Bill Collins, American's vice president of base maintenance. "The planes used to be silver. But with the new planes that are made of composites, the unpainted color would range from dark brown to black. The silver mica tint really makes it blast. In sunlight, it's brilliant. It conveys, first and foremost, the new American."
The new livery on the 196th 737 in American's fleet is appropriate because for the first time in 20-plus years American has fewer of its workhorse MD-80s - 191 - than the 737s.
The new aircraft's lighter weight and updated engines are 35 percent more fuel efficient than the 1980s-vintage MD-80s, company officials said.
Over the next five years, American will take delivery of 200 Boeing 737s and 260 Airbus A320s in an estimated $38 billion program to modernize its fleet.
"Our new logo and livery are designed to reflect the passion for progress and the soaring spirit, which is uniquely American," said Virasb Vahidi, American's chief commercial officer. "Our core colors - red, white and blue - have been updated to reflect a more vibrant and welcoming spirit. The new tail, with stripes flying proudly, is a bold reflection of American's origin and name.
"And our new flight symbol, an updated eagle, incorporates the many icons that people have come to associate with American, including the 'A' and the star."
The new livery and paint scheme come at a cost, which American spokeswoman Andrea Huguely could not provide, but industry officials said it could total more than $50 million for the 610-aircraft American fleet.
The painting contractor for the 737-800 and two 777s undergoing the livery change is Leading Edge Aviation Services Inc. of Victorville, Calif., American executives said.
Original Print Headline: American's new look
D.R. Stewart 918-581-8451
A Boeing 737-800 featuring American Airlines' new logo and other redesigned livery sits on display Tuesday in a hangar at the carrier's Tulsa Maintenance & Engineering Center. MICHAEL WYKE / Tulsa World
A Boeing 737-800 featuring American Airlines' new design scheme for its jets' tail section sits on display Tuesday in a hangar at the carrier's Tulsa Maintenance & Engineering Center. MICHAEL WYKE / Tulsa World