Air Canada has shifted its Boeing 737 Max delivery schedule, delaying some deliveries up to three years as it evaluates other aspects of its fleet, including performance of the Bombardier CSeries.

But while it will delay 11 737 deliveries, the Montreal-based carrier has shifted five 737 Max deliveries forward one year, to 2020, executives said during Air Canada's earnings call on 30 April.

"We concluded an amendment to [our] Boeing 737 purchase agreement where certain aircraft are accelerated and other are deferred," Air Canada chief financial officer Michael Rousseau says during the call.

The company does not say if the changes affect orders for 737 Max 8s or 737 Max 9s, and it does not disclose a specific timeline.

The company in 2014 placed orders for 61 737 Max, including 50 737 Max 8 and 11 737 Max 9s, with deliveries initially scheduled to run from 2017 to 2021.

The 737 Max 9s were to be handed over last, in 2020 and 2021, according to Flight Fleets Analyzer.

Air Canada already operates 12 737 Max 8s.

Its most-recent fleet plan leaves unchanged an expectation for the airline to have 36 737 Max in the fleet by the end of 2019.

Asked about why Air Canada made the shift, chief executive Calin Rovinescu says it ensures the company brings 737s on board when it needs the capacity.

But he cites other "moving parts", including Air Canada's fleet of 25 Embraer 190s and an order for 45 CS300s.

Air Canada will begin divesting E190s this year, and it intends to receive CS300s between late 2019 and 2022.

"When we made the 737 order we didn't know exactly what we were doing with exiting the 190s… We didn't have, at that stage, the CSeries orders," he says.

"We will also wait and see how the CSeries performs," Rovinescu adds.

He also hints at possible further orders, noting that Air Canada holds options on both 737s and CS300s.

"These changes give us maximum flexibility to bring the 737s Max in a time when we can use them most effectively," he says. "We don’t want to be inundated with aircraft at times when we can't use them, and we don't want to be short of aircraft."

Source: Cirium Dashboard