|Traditional Indonesian dance graces the ceremony|
US airframer Boeing has delivered to Lion Air a new Boeing 737-900ER, marking the delivery of the 100th Boeing 737NG to the Lion Group, Indonesia’s largest airline group.
It is not surprising that the delivered aircraft was the largest in the Boeing 737 Next-Generation family. Lion Air, which was established in 1999, was also the launch customer for the 737-900ER.
In February 2012, the carrier finalised the world’s largest jetliner order, at the time, for 201 737 MAXs and 29 Next-Generation 737-900ERs (extended range), worth $22.4 billion at list prices. Lion Air will also be the launch customer of the 737 MAX 9, which will be the new engine upgrade of the 737-900ER.
Lion Air mainline currently operates 67 737-900ERs and 19 737-800s. The group’s other Next-Generation 737s are allocated to its full-service carrier in Indonesia, Batik Air, and to its overseas affiliates: Malindo Air in Malaysia and Thai Lion Air, a new carrier based in Bangkok.
Lion Air is engaged in a bitter rivalry with Malaysia’s low cost group AirAsia headed by Tony Fernandes. Lion Air decided to launch Malindo in Malaysia, after Tony Fernandes moved to Indonesia to focus on the growth of Indonesia AirAsia. AirAsia is also in the process of launching a new carrier in India, AirAsia India.
The Lion Group’s 100th airplane, a 737-900ER (Extended Range) features a special livery commemorating the delivery. Lion Air’s 900s are configured in an all economy 213 seat layout.
The Lion Air Group operates an extensive route network in Indonesia and also serves international destinations. In terms of domestic, Lion mainline and subsidiary Wings Air serve 76 destinations in Indonesia, giving the group the largest domestic network in Indonesia. Lion Air mainline has 580 flights a day and Wings Air has 180 flights per day.