5B/P engines to power 18 firm, 8 option Airbus Industrie A319/A320 aircraft scheduled to begin delivery in late 1997.
The CFM56 family, which is the best-selling engine line in the industry, is produced by CFM International (CFMI), a 50/50 joint venture between Snecma (Safran Group) of France and General Electric of the United States. Through October, CFMI had received orders for nearly 1,000 firm engines at a value of about $4 billion. Overall, the CFM56-5 powers about 65 percent of the A319/A320/A321 aircraft in service or on order, and has been chosen to power 56 percent of those ordered to date in 1996.
TAP Air Portugal conducted an exhaustive technical evaluation prior to selecting the CFM56-5B/P. Joao Marques da Cruz, TAP general director of Corporate Planning and Control, noted that, "Taking into consideration all the aspects related to investments - operational costs, technical performance, and financial support - TAP strongly believes that CFMI's engines are the best choice for a European carrier."
"TAP's selection of the CFM56-5B/P is confirmation that the engine is ideally suited to airline needs on the A320 family," said Jean-Pierre Cojan, vice president of CFM I. "The -5B/P combines the inherent reliability of CFM56 engines with the most advanced technology for better performance, longer life, and lower maintenance costs."
Technology enhancements in the CFM56-5B/P provide appreciably more time on wing, both first run and after shop visit, and lower maintenance costs relative to the base CFM56-5B. In addition, the -5B/P also provides an overall specific fuel consumption (SFC) improvement of about 3 percent. All of these engine enhancements will provide airlines significant reductions in annual direct operating costs.