Air New Zealand (NZ, Auckland Int'l) has announced it has selected the B787 for its widebody fleet renewal plans.

In a statement, the carrier said it had signed commitments with Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) for eight firm ordered B787-10s with options for up to an additional twelve. It has also negotiated substitution rights that allow a switch from the larger B787-10 to the B787-9, or a combination of the two models for future fleet and network flexibility.

Deliveries of the firm B787-10s, which are due to start in September 2022 and will run through until late 2027, can be delayed or accelerated according to market demand.

Air New Zealand will use the B787s to replace its existing fleet of nine B777-200(ER)s which currently average 13.6 years of age and which will be phased out by 2025. It also operates eight B777-300(ER)s.

The carrier is an existing B787 operator with thirteen -9s currently in service. However, unlike these existing jets which are all powered by the problem-strewn Rolls-Royce Trent 1000, the new order B787s will be powered by General Electric GEnx-1B motors.