IndiGo Airlines (6E, Delhi International) is reportedly edging towards a deal to acquire as many as 500 A320neo Family aircraft from Airbus (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac), unnamed aviation industry sources told news agency Reuters on the sidelines of the IATA World Air Transport Summit in Istanbul this week.

The European manufacturer is the frontrunner in the potential agreement, but Airbus and Boeing (BOE, Washington National) are still competing in separate talks to sell twenty-five widebodies - A330neo or B787s - to the same airline, the sources said.

According to the ch-aviation fleets module, IndiGo Airlines’ fleet is dominated by Airbus jets, with hundreds more of them already on order. It currently operates 165 A320-200Ns with 175 more of the type on order, twenty-one A320-200s, eighty-four A321-200NX with 237 more on order, two A321-200(P2F)s, and thirty-nine ATR72-600s. It also has sixty-nine A321-200NY(XLR)s to be delivered. In addition, the carrier is wet-leasing in three B777-300(ER) widebodies from Turkish Airlines (TK, Istanbul Airport).

The new order would exceed Air India’s provisional acquisition of 470 jets in February, the biggest aircraft order on record. IndiGo, Airbus, and Boeing have declined to comment on the matter. However, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire revealed in early March that IndiGo could announce an order for “several hundred” Airbus aircraft at the upcoming Paris Air Show in June.

IndiGo Airlines is India’s biggest carrier by a comfortable margin. According to ch-aviation capacities data, its aircraft account for 53.68% of the seat capacity on flights in and out of the country’s airports (2,183,368 of the total 4,067,506 seats for the week starting June 12).

As Airbus and Boeing rack up billions of dollars worth of new orders, with airlines firming deals ahead of approaching shortages, Indian carriers currently have the second-largest order book, behind the United States, Reuters reported citing a June 1 report on the sector by Barclays. However, some insiders have expressed concern that airlines could be over-ordering.

IndiGo Airlines CEO Pieter Elbers said in late March that the airline was targeting 350 aircraft by March 31, 2024, and expressed confidence that the Indian aviation market “should probably double by the end of the decade.”