Max Kingsley-Jones/LONDON Guy Norris/Los Angeles

International Lease Finance (ILFC) is finalising a $1.5 billion order with Airbus Industrie for 10 A340-500/600s. Details are expected to be unveiled at the Farnborough air show in September.

According to Rob Duncan, a senior vice-president at the Los Angeles, California-based leasing company, just "one or two issues" need to be resolved before the Airbus deal is finalised. Duncan says that the order, divided between the 313-seat -500 and the 380-seat -600, will be flexible. Deliveries are expected to start in 2002.

ILFC is the biggest customer for Airbus aircraft, having placed 266 orders for every type in the consortium's product line, around half of which have been delivered. ILFC has been among the launch customers for all the new Airbus models launched over the last 10 years, and will be the first leasing company to sign up for the new Rolls-Royce Trent 500-powered models.

The A340-500/600 programme was launched last December, and orders, options and commitments total 110 aircraft from eight customers. Virgin Atlantic, with orders and options for 16 -600s, is lead customer and will be the first to receive the new aircraft in early 2002.

Source: Flight International