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Press Release

Virgin Australia orders LEAP-1B-powered 737 MAX 8 aircraft

July 08, 2012

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA -- Friday, 6 July, 2012 - Virgin Australia has signed an order for 23 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft powered by LEAP-1B engines, which are manufactured by CFM International, a 50/50 joint venture between GE and Snecma (Safran group).

Virgin Australia has been a CFM customer since its official launch in August 2000 and currently operates a fleet of 68 CFM56-7B and -7BE powered Next Generation 737-700s and 737-800s.

Max York, Managing Director of CFM parent company GE Aviation Australia and NZ, said that the order continued the long-standing relationship forged with the airline since 2000.

"We welcome the opportunity to demonstrate our continued commitment to Virgin Australia with
the new LEAP-1B engine," Mr York said.

Sankar Narayan, CFO of Virgin Australia, said: "The purchase of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft powered by LEAP-1B engines will help our airline to maintain a young, efficient and flexible fleet of modern aircraft, enabling us to achieve strong on time performance and maintain our low cost base."

The LEAP-1B engines reduce fuel use by an additional 13 per cent over today's most fuel-efficient single-aisle aircraft.

The LEAP-1B, which is the result of an exhaustive six-year collaboration effort with Boeing, is the exclusive powerplant for the new 737 variant, with the engine uniquely optimised for the aircraft. The 737 MAX 8 continues a 30-year relationship between CFM and Boeing -- CFM engines have been the sole powerplant for all 737 aircraft sold since 1981.

LEAP engines incorporate technologies never before seen in the single-aisle aircraft segment. The new engine will combine advanced aerodynamic design techniques, lighter, more durable materials, and leading-edge environmental technologies, making it a major breakthrough in engine technology.

The fuel-efficient aircraft will join Virgin Australia's fleet between 2019 and 2021.

For more information on LEAP engines visit:

CFM, CFM56 and the CFM logo are trademarks of CFM International, a 50/50 joint company between Snecma (Safran group) and GE

Media contacts Australia

Joanne Woo
Corporate Communications Director
GE Australia & New Zealand
0409 330 731
[email protected]

Patrick Keneally
n2n communications
02 9213 2305
0431 743 212
[email protected]

Emma_ Rugge-Price
VP Communications
[email protected]

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