US transportation finance services provider CIT has placed a $2.8bn firm order with European aircraft manufacturer Airbus for ten mid-size long-range Xtra Wide-Body A350-900 aeroplanes.

CIT Transportation Finance president Jeffrey Knittel said that this order for Airbus A350 XWBs will further expand the company’s fleet of medium-to-long haul aircraft.

""This new order underscores our commitment to delivering highly efficient aircraft to our global customer base," Knittel said.

Airbus is expected to begin the delivery of new A350-900 aeroplanes in 2019.

The latest firm order brings the firm’s backlog for the variant to 15 aeroplanes.

CIT had initially placed an order for five A350-800s and two A350-900s, but in 2011 converted its backlog of seven aircraft to five larger A350-900 variant.

To date, CIT has 253 Airbus aircraft on order, which includes 187 A320 jets, 51 A330 variants and 15 A350 XWB aeroplanes.

Airbus COO Customers John Leahy said: "We are very confident that our A350 XWB family will perfectly meet long haul operators’ needs by offering them the highest levels of comfort and efficiency."

"The A350 XWB is a line of mid-size wide-body jets that can accommodate up to 314 passengers."

Featuring advanced aerodynamics, design and technologies, A350 XWB is a line of mid-size wide-body jets that can accommodate up to 314 passengers.

It will offer a 25% reduction in fuel consumption and decreased operating costs compared with rival aircraft in the segment, according to Airbus.

Around 70% of the A350 XWB’s airframe is made using advanced composite materials such as titanium and aluminium alloys, and its carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) fuselage enables low fuel burn, as well as easier maintenance.

Scheduled to enter service in 2014, A350 XWB has received 572 firm orders from 34 customers worldwide.

In December 2012, Doha-based Qatar Airways converted its existing firm order for A350s to larger and wide-body A350-900 and A350-1000 variants.

Image: Airbus is expected to begin the delivery of A350-900 to CIT in 2019. Photo: Airbus SAS / Fixion.