TAP Air Portugal has received its first of 12 A321LRs on order, extending its fleet of Airbus aircraft.

The A321LR is powered by CFM engines and configured with 171 seats comprising 16 full-flat business, 48 eco-premium and 107 economy seats.

The A321LR is expected to assist the airline’s expansion efforts into new markets and will be operated on the Lisbon-Tel Aviv route at its entry into service.

TAP Air Portugal CEO Antonoaldo Neves said: “The A321LR is critical for TAP’s expansion plans. With its superior range, we can comfortably explore markets in North America, South America and Africa from Portugal, and it’ll fit in seamlessly with our A330neos.

“The A321LR and A330neo working in tandem have the middle market segment nicely covered.”

“In North America, it allows us to explore markets on the East Coast such as New York, Boston, Montreal or Washington. In Brazil, the A321LR can open new markets in the Northeast and complement existing services to cities like Recife, Natal, Fortaleza or Salvador.”

TAP Air Portugal currently operates an Airbus fleet of 75 aircraft consisting of five A330neo, 13 A330ceo, four A340s, and 45 A320 family aircraft. It also operates a combined A330neo and A321LR fleet.

A member of the A320neo family, the A321LR leverages A350 XWB technology and incorporates the new-generation engines, new wings and new sharklets.

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It delivers 30% fuel savings and a nearly 50% reduction in noise footprint and has a range of up to 4,000nm.

Airbus chief commercial officer Christian Scherer said: “We applaud TAP Air Portugal for becoming the first airline to leverage the benefits of the A321LR and the A330neo in a common fleet. The A321LR and A330neo working in tandem have the middle market segment nicely covered.”