In a special ceremony here, Iberia Airlines and CFM International celebrated 20 years of cooperation. The Spanish airline became a CFM customer in the early 1990s, when it selected the CFM56-5 engine to power its new Airbus A320 aircraft.
Currently, Iberia operates a fleet of approximately 70 CFM56-5-powered A319, A320, and A321 aircraft on its short-to medium-haul routes, along with 19 CFM56-5C-powered long-range, four engine Airbus A340-300 aircraft for its long-haul routes.
"Some of the key factors behind our continued selection of the CFM56-5 included the engine's low operating cost, low fuel consumption, and low maintenance costs, Jos Luis Ruiz de Castaeda, managing director of Iberia Maintenance and Engineering. "In addition to CFM's excellent customer support".
"We are pleased and honored to celebrate this great milestone with all of our friends here at Iberia, and the entire CFM Team extends its warmest thanks and congratulations," said Jean-Paul Ebanga, president and CEO of CFM International. "It is highly gratifying when an airline with such rich history and stature in the industry chooses to make your products such an essential part of its operations. We have developed a marvelous relationship with Iberia over the past two decades and believe that the years ahead will only continue to strengthen that bond."
Iberia is Spain's largest air transportation group, and following its merger with British Airways in January, 2011, it is now Europe's third-largest and the world's sixth largest in terms of sales. In addition, Iberia is market leader on routes between Europe and Latin America, with the largest offer of destinations and frequencies. Every day Iberia, its franchise partner Iberia Regional/Air Nostrum and British Airways operate nearly 1,750 flights to 204 destinations in 121 countries. Together they have a fleet of 348 total aircraft and in 2010 they carried some 55 million passengers. As well as transporting passengers and cargo, Iberia is also the 9th largest aircraft maintenance and engineering company in the worldapart from the original manufacturersand supports approximately 100 customers from all around the world. The company also provides airport handling services.
CFM56-5 engines are a product of CFM International, a 50/50 joint venture between Snecma (Safran group) and GE. CFM, the world's leading supplier of commercial aircraft engines, has delivered nearly 23,000 engines to date and the fleet has achieved more than 550 million flight hours as the most reliable engines in the air.