Russia has been at war with Ukraine for almost a year. The West is reacting, among other things, with sanctions against Russia – and these are also affecting the country’s airlines. They lack spare parts for Western models, for example. This was made particularly clear by the cannibalization of an almost new Airbus A350 by Aeroflot in the summer of 2022.
Now there is speculation about the Airbus A321 Neo from S7 Airlines. The private airline has eight of the planes in its fleet – though all are currently grounded. One of the A321 Neo has not taken off since the end of November 2022. The others completed their last flights so far between January 7th and 16th, 2023.
The airline told the Tass news agency that it had not taken the A321 Neo out of service due to sanctions and a lack of spare parts, but was simply maintaining it. “Traditionally, part of the aircraft fleet undergoes scheduled winter maintenance in preparation for the peak summer season,” says S7.
The Russian portal Frequentflyers, on the other hand, writes that the airline is really about Pratt
S7 Airlines also has Airbus A321 Ceo and A320 Ceo and Neo in its fleet. It also operates Embraer E170 and Boeing 737-800. Boeing 737 Max let them go back to the lessor. Your subsidiary airline Globus also flies with Airbus A319 for S7.
The A321 Neo are the highest capacity aircraft at S7. The airline operates it in two variants. Four of the eight jets have eight business class and 195 economy class seats, the others have eight business and 203 economy class seats.
For comparison: The Boeing 737-800 from S7 has a business class cabin with eight seats and an economy class with 168. The Airbus A321-200 of the Ceo generation have eight seats in business class and 189 in economy Class.
So while S7 operates a fleet consisting entirely of Western models, the Russian state is putting pressure on domestic airlines to buy Russian-made aircraft. Tatyana Fileva, boss and co-owner of the S7 Group, said last fall that they were definitely interested in ordering the Irkut MS-21.
At the same time, Fileva put on the brakes. Irkut has announced the start for 2025, but then production will still be minimal and will first have to be ramped up. Mass production is not yet foreseeable, said the S7 boss.
This article was written by Timo Nowack
The original of this article “Russian S7 Airline Grounds All Airbus A321 Neo” comes from aeroTelegraph.