Hamburg - Since the beginning of 2018, the parking spaces in Airbus' Hamburg and Toulouse facilities have been filled up with A320neos waiting for their engines.
Airbus will resume the current dormant A320neo deliveries with Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines in May / June period, the manufacturer said. According to CEO Tom Enders, the European manufacturer had initially targeted a resumption in April.
Airbus has been struggling with massive engine problems with the A320neo for more than two years. Above all, the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan, which is used on around half of the jets, caused delays in the delivery of the new generation A320 family aircraft in 2016 and 2017.
At first there were heat and software problems. The engine manufacturer solved those problems. But a new type of seal installed on turbine blades that have been delivered since December 2017, has triggered engine failures at take-off and in flight. According to Pratt & Whitney, 43 faulty engines were installed on 32 aircraft.
Airbus stopped deliveries in February and decided to return 55 engines to Pratt & Whitney. The American program partner was expected to deliver faultless engines to Airbus later this month. At the same time, Pratt & Whitney were to supply active fleets with replacement engines.
The US and EU civil aviation authorities have imposed operational restrictions on the A320neo affected by the recent problem but imposed interim prohibitions only for those aircraft on which both engines contain the problematic type of seal.
After the in-flight engine failures on three A320neo from GoAir and IndiGo between 24 February and 12 March, the Indian civil aviation authority DGCA went a step further and grounded all aircraft that were equipped with faulty engines.