FARNBOROUGH: Hazy cites strong customer interest in the ATR 72-600

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Air Lease CEO Steven Udvar-Hazy believes strong customer interest exists for the 10 ATR 72-600s he has ordered at the Farnborough air show.

ATR plans to begin deliveries to the lessor at the end of 2011, and Hazy says the primary emphasis on lease placement is outside the USA. Air Lease has spoken with 16 different airlines that have shown interest in the 70-seat turboprop.

During his 37 years with leasing giant ILFC, Hazy opted to build a portfolio of Airbus and Boeing narrow and widebody aircraft. But he describes the ATR 72-600 as the latest technological and most fuel efficient of the larger turboprops, "that offers the lowest cost to our customers". He says as Air Lease places the 10 turboprops with operators, the company will review its portfolio plan to determine if it makes sense to exercise the 10 options it has taken for the aircraft.

ATR's agreement with Air Lease is the airframer's first with a major lessor and the manufacturer's head of sales John Moore says there could be more opportunities for ATR with larger lessors in the future.