AerCap Orders Up To 30 Airbus A321P2F Conversions From EFW

AerCap A321 P2F
Credit: EFW

Lessor AerCap has placed a firm order for 15 Airbus A321-200 passenger-to-freighter (P2F) conversions with German conversion specialist Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW), with options for a further 15 A321P2F conversions. 

The aircraft are from AerCap’s A321 passenger portfolio and are expected to be delivered from 2023 to 2025.  

Freighters, both new and converted, are in demand throughout the industry, partly as a result of the pandemic, when many operators experienced a cargo capacity squeeze with long-haul passenger flights grounded, removing belly capacity from the market. Strong demand for e-commerce—and projections that it will continue to grow over the coming years—has also increased demand for more freighter capacity.  

Both Airbus and Boeing have launched new freighter programs—the A350F and the Boeing 777-8F—in recent months and demand for conversions is strong.  

Earlier in October, EFW also said it would work with MRO specialist Turkish Technic on A330 P2F conversions to meet growing demand for the converted freighter. 

“Extending the life of our A321 fleet will complement the cargo portfolio and meet the strong demand from our diverse customer base, from which we’ve seen a significant appetite for this freighter,” said Rich Greener, Head of AerCap Cargo. “The A321 freighter is the best-in-class and most fuel-efficient aircraft to replace the B757-200 freighter. This transaction is in line with our cargo portfolio strategy of diversifying our fleet with improved economics and returns.” 

“We are glad to finalize the agreement with AerCap on the A321P2F conversions,” CEO of EFW Jordi Boto said. “Our young A320P2F family program has gone from strength to strength and gained traction very quickly in the market with a dozen aircraft already in operation.”

Helen Massy-Beresford

Based in Paris, Helen Massy-Beresford covers European and Middle Eastern airlines, the European Commission’s air transport policy and the air cargo industry for Aviation Week & Space Technology and Aviation Daily.