With an average list price of $101 million, an Airbus A320 aircraft does not come cheap – but this version of the popular single-aisle aircraft is likely to cost a lot more. You’d normally expect to find an A320 family aircraft – which includes the smaller A319 and stretched A321 versions flying short-haul routes. The aircraft type is beloved by low-cost airlines and is a workhorse that will often spend longer in the air than it ever does on the ground.
But Airbus has been developing a decidedly more luxurious version of its A320NEO aircraft – Some 500 of which are already in service around the world. But unlike existing A320 aircraft, the ACJ320NEO (ACJ stands for Airbus Corporate Jet) will have a bespoke and luxe cabin interior outfitted in a special facility in Basle, Switzerland.
So far, only 11 pf the ACJ320NEO family aircraft have been ordered to date, with the first set to be delivered to London-based private jet charter company Acropolis Aviation in the coming weeks.
Inside, the cabin boasts full-sized sofa’s, reclining leather seats, plush carpets and wooden tables. The overhead bins that you’d typically expect to find have been ripped out to create a greater sense of space and height – in fact, the ACJ320 has the widest and tallest cabins of any large business-jet according to Airbus.
Along with the Five Star interior, the ACJ320 also features greater cabin pressure than standard A320’s which should enhance passenger comfort. Extra fuel tanks are also built into the cargo hold to deliver even more intercontinental range than normal. The smaller ACJ319neo can fly eight passengers for more than 15-hours, while the 320 version can comfortably accommodate up to 25 passengers on flights of over 13-hours.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Middle East is one of the largest business-jet markets in the world, and it was the region where Airbus sold its first corporate jet in the mid-Eighties. Today, around 60 ACJs are flying in the Middle East – around 40 of those are narrowbody 320 family corporate jets, and 20 are VIP widebodies.