FedEx Express will buy 24 new widebody freighters – 12 767-300ERFs and 777Fs each – as continued growth in the freight market fuels a fleet replacement cycle, the cargo carrier and Boeing announced on 19 June.
The orders will be added to Boeing’s backlog once a set of unspecified contingencies are met, Boeing says.
The commitments would add to the Memphis-based carrier’s backlog that now includes 58 767 Freighters and five 777Fs, according to Flight Fleets Analyzer.
FedEx Express now operates 58 767-300ERFs and 35 777Fs, the Analyzer shows.
The orders are valued at $6.6 billion at list price.
The new airplanes, valued at $6.6 billion at list prices, will appear on Boeing's orders and deliveries webpage once contingencies have been met.
Air cargo traffic jumped by 10% last year and is expected to grow by 4-5% in 2018, Boeing says.
Including the FedEx Express deal, Boeing has signed orders for than 50 widebody freighters since 1 January.
“This repeat order is a big vote of confidence in Boeing's market-leading freighter family and the long-term outlook for air freight,” says Kevin McAllister, president and chief executive officer, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The deal also helps Boeing keep production stable on the 777 line. As of 31 May, Boeing’s backlog for the current generation of the 777 stood at 88 aircraft. A confirmed deal with FedEx Express would raise that total to 100, which is equivalent to 20 months of production at the current rate.
Boeing also plans to start delivering the first member of the re-engined and re-winged 777X family in 2020.