SINGAPORE 2010: Powerplant differs on extra HK A330s

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Six Airbus A330-200s at the centre of a Hong Kong Airlines acquisition agreement will have Pratt & Whitney engines, even though 17 other A330s on order will be Rolls-Royce Trent-powered.

Airbus disclosed yesterday that HK Airlines had signed a memorandum of understanding to take the additional A330s.

HK Airlines has yet to explain the rationale for its surprise agreement - which comes just a year after the airline cut back a previous order for 20 A330s - and the reason why the extra aircraft will have PW4170 engines, rather than Trent 700s.

Its purchasing department's general manager, Wang Jun Shan, simply says that the airline is "very pleased with the fuel-burn and environmental performance benefits" of the engine.

Pratt & Whitney, in a statement at the Singapore Air Show, says that the airline has "selected" the powerplant as part of an agreement which includes two spare engines and a fleet-management scheme.