International Aero Engines (IAE) has backed up a new long-term commitment to the four-company joint venture with the unveiling of a "next generation" V2500 turbofan called the SelectTwo.

Upon entry-into-service in 2013, the SelectTwo engine should trim fuel burn costs by 0.58% for an Airbus A320 on a 500-nm leg, IAE says. That translates to roughly $4.3 million savings over a 10-year period for a 10-aircraft fleet of A320s completing 2,300 flights per year, the company says.

Although promising smaller fuel burn cuts than next-generation engines in development by two members of IAE - Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce - the SelectTwo shows the joint venture is "committed to providing substantial support and continued investment in the V2500", says Ian Aitken, president and chief executive of IAE.

Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce, however, continue to focus on separate projects for engines that will eventually replace the V2500 and the CFM International CFM56.

The P&W 1100G geared turbofan was selected by Airbus to power the re-engined A320neo after the manufacturer failed to persuade Rolls-Royce to offer the engine jointly through the IAE venture, which also includes Japanese Aero Engines Corporation and MTU Aero Engines.

Rolls-Royce, meanwhile, has committed to developing a new, more efficient engine core to power the next generation of narrowbodies, bypassing the near-term option of re-engining improved versions of the Boeing 737 and A320.

The SelectTwo is by design a less ambitious offering. The core and low-pressure spool of the two-shaft V2500 is left untouched by the upgrade. SelectTwo comprises a software upgrade for the electronic engine control and a new data entry plug.

IAE unveiled the SelectOne performance improvement package for the V2500 in 2005 with launch customer IndiGo Airlines, and with an after-market agreement.

But IAE is offering the SelectTwo package as a sales order option on V2500-A5 SelectOne engines, but has not announced receiving a launch customer.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news