TOULOUSE, France --- Air Calédonie and ATR today signed the contract for 3 new aircraft: 1 ATR 42-500 and 2 ATR 72-500. This follows the intention announced on June 13, 2005 at Paris Air Show. Today’s contract signing was unveiled on the occasion of a joint press conference held today at Maré (New Caledonia) between ATR and Air Calédonie.
The contract is approximately $50 million based upon list price.
The carrier Air Calédonie has selected the new-generation ATR aircraft to renew its fleet, in the frame of its restructuring programme.
Nidoïsh Naisseline, President and Chairman of Air Calédonie declared: “We have chosen ATR for the high quality standard, reliability, low operating costs and high degree of commonality between the ATR 42 and ATR 72 aircraft. By adding also the ATR 72-500s to our fleet, we will increase the capacity on feeder routes and have better flexibility to satisfy our increase in passenger and freight traffic, on specific routes.”
The aircraft are scheduled to be delivered between 2006 and 2007. Equipped with the new “Elegance” cabin, the aircraft will be delivered with the Multi-Purpose Computer (MPC), the newest technological innovations in the field navigation aid tools.
Filippo Bagnato, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, stated: “I’m proud of this renewed demonstration of confidence. Air Calédonie will be able to provide new generation aircraft to its passengers with an improved product and better comfort.”
Since the beginning of the programme, ATR has sold 749 aircraft (391 ATR 42s and 358 ATR 72s) and 61 from January 1st onwards.
Filippo Bagnato also added: “From the beginning of the year 2005, ATR logged over 60 new aircraft sales. This commercial success is strong evidence of the important role that the turboprop aircraft continues to play in the regional aviation market.”
Created in June 1955, the Noumea-based airline Air Calédonie covers 98% of the whole New Caledonian domestic network. The airline currently operates four regional aircraft, of which three are ATR 42-320s. Air Calédonie carries 280,000 passengers and over 1,500 tonnes of freight per year with a turnover in excess of 2.5 billion French Pacific Francs.