Brazil’s Passaredo Linhas Aéreas introduces ATR 72-600 into its fleet

The airline will operate a total fleet of 14 ATR 72-600s and 2 ATR 72-500s .

Brazilian carrier Passaredo Linhas Aéreas on May 22nd introduced the new ATR 72-600 into its fleet. The airline and the US-based leasing company Air Lease Corporation (ALC) have entered into an agreement for the introduction of four ATR 72-600s, and today took delivery of the very first of these aircraft at the ATR facilities in Toulouse, France.

On the occasion of this delivery ceremony, ATR and Passaredo officially unveiled as well that they signed a contract for the purchase of ten ATR 72-600s plus ten options, valued at some US$ 450 million. The airline will introduce the four ATRs leased from ALC and the ten firm aircraft booked with the aircraft manufacturer progressively in 2012, 2013 and 2014, thus bringing to 14 its total fleet of ATR 72-600s. In addition to this fleet of ATR 72-600s, Passaredo will also start operating this year two leased ATR 72-500s.

With the arrival of these new 70-seat ATRs, Passaredo will progressively add passenger capacity and substantially reduce seat-costs on its regional network. The airline will benefit from its Interline Agreement with Brazil’s leading aviation group GOL and will further develop its regional network with the introduction of new routes across the country.

Commenting on the introduction of these aircraft, Steven Udvar-Hazy, Chief Executive Officer of ALC, declared: “We are pleased to add Passaredo to our growing list of customers. Out of a total of twelve ATR 72-600s ordered from ATR since July 2010, we have already placed ten with Brazilian carriers. This is clearly underlining the dynamism of the Brazilian market and that ATRs perfectly match the requirements of the regional operators in Brazil. We are convinced that, due to their strong and increasing attractiveness among regional carriers around the world, the new ATRs will keep providing us with substantial business opportunities in the near future”.

Luiz Felicio, President of Passaredo Linhas Aéreas, declared: “The ATR aircraft is proving itself as the right tool for regional operations in Brazil, as it combines highly reliable performance at small airfields and short runways with the highest standards of passenger comfort and very limited environmental footprint. Both from a cost and modernity perspective, the ATR 72-600 aircraft is definitely the best suited regional aircraft for short-haul operations in Brazil”.

Filippo Bagnato, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, declared: “We are experiencing an extraordinary success in Brazil, where we have booked orders with regional carriers for some 50 ATRs within the last couple of years. This growth of regional operations in Brazil is also creating business opportunities for leasing companies that have invested in the ATR product. Lessors’ interest in ATRs is dramatically increasing. In 2011, the best commercial year for ATR, leasing companies represented more than 20% of the total aircraft sales”.

ATR is well established in Latin America and the Caribbean region, with more than 130 aircraft flying in the livery of 29 operators, including more than 60 aircraft currently being operated in Brazil. Within the next three years, the number of ATRs flying in Brazil will grow beyond 100 aircraft.

About the ATR 72-600:

Passenger capacity: 68-74 seats
Engines: Pratt & Whitney 127M
Maximum power at take-off: 2,750 horse power per engine
Maximum weight at take-off: 23,000 Kg
Maximum load: 7,500 Kg
Maximum range with full passenger load: 899 nautical miles (1,665 Km).

About Passaredo Linhas Aéreas:

Based in Riberao Preto (300 Km north of Sao Paulo) Passaredo Linhas Aéreas began operations in 1995. Its fleet currently comprises 14 Embraer 145 jets. In 2010, Passaredo signed an Interline Agreement with GOL Linhas Aéreas, the largest low-cost airline in Latin America, which has some 40% share of the domestic Brazilian market. Passaredo currently operates 104 routes to 26 destinations in Brazil. As a result of the agreement with Passaredo, GOL will add new destinations and direct connections to its route network. Given its intention of maintaining its regional identity, the partnership with GOL will give an important boost to its operations, allowing Passaredo to offer a wider range of destinations.

About Air Lease Corporation (NYSE: AL)

Launched in 2010, ALC is an aircraft leasing company based in Los Angeles, California that has airline customers throughout the world. ALC and its team of dedicated and experienced professionals are principally engaged in purchasing commercial aircraft and leasing them to its airline partners worldwide through customized aircraft leasing and financing solutions. For more information, visit ALC's website at www.airleasecorp.com.

About ATR:

Founded in 1981, ATR has become the world leader on the market for regional aircraft with 90 seats or less. Since its creation, ATR has sold approximately 1,200 aircraft to over 180 operators based in 91 countries. ATR planes have totaled over 21 million flight hours. ATR is an equal partnership between two major European aeronautics players, Alenia Aermacchi (a Finmeccanica Group company) and EADS. Its head office is in Toulouse. ATR is ISO 14001 certified. This is the international reference standard in the field for environmental friendliness.

Source: ATR

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