Boeing Stock price – Rankin: B737-8 is the perfect aircraft to take Cayman into the future
Chairman of the Board of Directors of Cayman Airways, Phillip Rankin, says the Boeing’s B737-8 (B737 Max 8) that has re-joined the airline’s fleet is the perfect aircraft to take Cayman into the future.
Through a specific lease arrangement with the Air Lease Corporation and the Boeing Corporation, Cayman Airways was originally able to get the new B737-8 aircraft at a lease rate that was comparable to that of aircraft that were ten years old.
“This meant that Cayman Airways would be able to access the reliability and efficiency that came with the new aircraft without having to bear the cost associated with new aircraft,” Mr Rankin said in a video release.
He said that the aircraft uses less fuel, has a greater range and carries more passengers than the B737-300.
Mr Rankin said the grounding of the Boeing 737-8 in 2019 was a major blow to Cayman Airways as it hampered the modernization of the air services on the islands. “It has been a difficult path to get to where we are today,” he said.
“With the un-grounding, Cayman Airways can look forward to continuing on its path of fleet modernization and to retire the old B737-300, which has been unreliable and costly to maintain,” he said.
Cayman Airways originally withdrew its B737-8 fleet from service on March 10, 2019 after two tragic accidents — Lion Air Flight 610 on October 29, 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on March 10, 2019.
Mr Rankin was quick to point out that the B737-8 is one of the safest aircraft in the skies.
On July 23, 2013, Boeing completed the firm configuration for the 737 MAX 8. The MAX 8 has a lower empty weight and higher maximum takeoff weight than the A320neo. During a test flight conducted for Aviation Week, while cruising at a true airspeed of 449 km (832 km/h) and a weight of 140,500 lb (63,700 kg), at a lower than optimal altitude (FL350 vs. the preferred FL390) and with an “unusually far forward” centre of gravity, the test aircraft consumed 4,460 lb (2,020 kg) of fuel per hour.
The Boeing 737 MAX 8 completed its first flight test in La Paz, Bolivia. The 13,300-foot altitude at El Alto International Airport tested the MAX’s capability to take off and land at high altitudes. Its first commercial flight was operated by Malindo Air on May 22, 2017, between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore as Flight OD803.
In early 2017, a new -8 was valued at $52.85 million, rising to below $54.5 million by mid-2018.