Brazilian leading airline TAM has just received from the manufacturing plant in Seattle, USA, the first of eight 777-300ER aircraft acquired from Boeing. The airplane will be used in the company's daily flights between São Paulo and Frankfurt, Germany and São Paulo and London. Initially, however, the 777 will fly the São Paulo-Santiago (Chile) route.
The B777-300ER plane has three seat classes and capacity to carry 365 passengers up to 7,930 nautical miles (14, 685 kilometers). It also offers greater energy efficiency. TAM says that in addition to reducing operating costs due to less fuel consumption, the aircraft will emit less harmful gasses into the environment and make less noise.
TAM is the first Latin American airline to operate the 777-300ER, the world's largest, long-range, twin-engine jetliner, powered by General Electric's GE-90 Series engines. The delivery also marks TAM's first acquisition of a new Boeing airplane.
The airline's new 777s feature the Boeing Class 3 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB), a hardware and electronic data package used by pilots that replaces traditional flight manuals and provides operational and safety benefits.
TAM is the first South American carrier to incorporate a Class 3 EFB, which is fully integrated into a commercial airplane's avionics. The EFB features an Onboard Performance Tool, using sophisticated calculations to help the airline optimize its payload for airport and weather conditions and applicable regulations and policies.
With the new airplane, TAM now has an operational fleet of 116 aircraft, including 110 Airbus (models 17 A319, 76 A320, 3 A321, 12 A330 and 2 A340), 1 B777-300 ER, 2 B767-300 and 3 MD-11.Â By the end of this year, the company will receive three more units of this Boeing model, which will replace the MD-11 aircraft that are currently being used in long distance flight routes and which will be returned by the end of 2008.
To support the expansion of the international flight network, TAM will also receive two additional Airbus A330 during this year. The Brazilian airline anticipates having 123 aircraft by the end of 2008. The forecast for the end of 2012 is to have 147 airplanes in operation.
"These acquisitions reinforce our policy of operating a young fleet, guaranteeing more passenger comfort in our quest for service excellence – one of the three pillars upon which the company bases its performance, along with Technical-Operational Excellence and Excellence in Management", says Captain David Barioni Neto, president of TAM.
"The 777-300ER will provide TAM with the lowest fuel consumption and operating costs available for airplanes in this class," said John Wojick, vice president sales, Latin America and the Caribbean, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "Advanced avionics of the Electronic Flight Bag, will further improve TAM's operating economics and reduce emissions."
TAM has been Brazil's domestic market leader since July of 2003, and closed July 2008 with 51.1% of market share. The company flies to 42 destinations in Brazil. Through business agreements signed with regional companies, it reaches 79 different destinations in Brazil. TAM's market share among Brazilian companies that operate international flights stood at 72.5% in July.
Operations abroad include TAM flights to 16 destinations in the United States, Europe and South America: New York and Miami (USA), Paris (France), London (England), Milan (Italy), Frankfurt (Germany), Madrid (Spain), Buenos Aires and Bariloche (Argentina), Santa Cruz de la Sierra (Bolivia), Santiago (Chile), Asuncion and Ciudad del Este (Paraguay), Montevideo (Uruguay), and Caracas (Venezuela).