American Airlines Airbus A321T: Virtual Tour and Review
NEW YORK — Going against a “bigger is better” trend, American Airlines announced plans in 2012 to replace its three-class Boeing 767-200 aircraft, which it primarily uses on its transcontinental flights from New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport to San Francisco and Los Angeles, with new, but much smaller, Airbus A321 jets.
American will put three new A321T aircraft into service just three weeks from now with nonstop service from New York to Los Angeles.
The next route to get the A321T will be New York-San Francisco, which will see the new aircraft go into service starting in March. The airline expects to have replaced all of its 767-200s on these routes by June, with a total of 13 flights linking New York and Los Angeles and five between San Francisco and New York.
The Airbus A321 that American will use will technically be a subfleet of its A321 fleet, with the designation A321T for transcon. It will have fully lie-flat seats in first and business and other amenities that will blend the environment of a private jet with service that is typically found in premium cabins on international flights.
By the end of 2014, American will have numerous Airbus A321Ts in its fleet. Once they come on board, American will retire its 767-200 fleet. The airline’s 767-300 fleet, however, which occasionally flew transcon routes, will be redeployed on other routes.
When the airline took delivery of the aircraft, Virasb Vahidi, the airline’s chief commercial officer, said that the A321T “is what our customers flying between New York and the West Coast value.”
The American A321T will offer a total of 102 seats in four separate cabins. Ten of those seats are in first class and 20 are in business class, with 36 in a separate premium economy section called Main Cabin Extra, and 36 in the main cabin.
The seats in business and first of the single-aisle plane are fully lie-flat and those in first have direct-aisle access. By comparison, the twin-aisle 767-200, which has ten seats in first, 30 in business, and 128 seats in coach, only has recliners in the premium two cabins.