Horizon Air enhances fleet with NextGen turboprop

Seattle-based Horizon Air Industries has taken steps that will result in the addition of NextGen turboprops to its existing fleet of Bombardier Q400 aircraft.

The airline, which is owned by Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK), signed a firm purchase agreement for one Bombardier Q400 NextGen turboprop airliner and retained its options on another seven aircraft, the parties announced on July 15. Based on the list price of the Q400 NextGen aircraft, the aircraft agreement is valued at approximately US$32.6mil.

Q400 NextGen in flight
"The Q400 aircraft has long been the backbone of our network success,” Glenn Johnson, Horizon Air president, said in a statement announcing the deal, noting that the addition of the NextGen aircraft will support the airline’s goal of increasing its network capacity “with aircraft that provide comfort and speed."

When it was established in 1981, Horizon Air operated two aircraft and served three destinations in Washington state. Today, Horizon flies 51 76-seat Q400 aircraft on behalf of Alaska Airlines and serves 43 cities in the western United States, Canada and Mexico. Horizon is the largest operator of the Q400 aircraft, with a current fleet of 51. The firm purchase order will bring its fleet to 52.

In addition to the aircraft purchase order and options, Bombardier and Horizon Air announced that they have signed a five-year heavy maintenance agreement for Bombardier to perform heavy maintenance tasks for the airline's fleet at Bombardier's service center in Tucson, Arizona.

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