TAP Portugal is to be the first to operate the re-engined Airbus A330neo, taking delivery of the type towards the end of 2017. Airbus announced the identity of the launch operator at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg on 6 April.

TAP has 14 of the Rolls-Royce Trent 7000-powered A330-900neo twinjets on order.

The airline converted to the A330neo – having previously selected the A350-800 before switching to the A350-900 – under a strategic shift to its fleet-modernisation plan, following privatisation last year.

Airbus is promoting its new Airspace cabin concept at AIX with an A330neo cabin mock-up, and says the decision means TAP Portugal would be the launch carrier for its new interiors brand.

Trey Urbahn, the airline’s chief commercial officer, was at the show yesterday to mark the deal with Francois Caudron, vice president of marketing at Airbus.

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Source: Flight Daily News