PALMA, Spain - Futura International Airways has taken delivery of its first new Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 aircraft powered by CFM56-7 engines. The aircraft, which are being leased from GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS), will be used to phase out the fleet of Classic 737-400 aircraft the airline currently operates. The CFM56-7 is produced by CFM International, a 50/50 joint company between Snecma of France and General Electric of the United States.

Futura International Airways was formed as a charter carrier in 1989 and is 85 percent owned by Aer Lingus. The airline will use the new 737s on charter routes from its bases in Palma de Mallorca, Tenerife, Arrecife, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Malaga. The CFM56-7 is the exclusive powerplant for the Boeing Next-Generation 737-600/-700/-800/-900 series. Since the program was launched in 1993, more than 60 customers have ordered more than 1,200 aircraft. More than 450 CFM56-7-powered Next-Generation 737 aircraft will be in service by year end.

The first CFM56-7-powered 737 entered service in December 1997 and the fleet has logged nearly two million flight hours while maintaining reliability ratings comparable to mature engine programs and allowing aircraft to be granted 180 minutes extended-range, twin-engine operations (ETOPS) approval only two years after entry into service. CFM56 engines have been selected to power 55 percent of the commercial aircraft with a capacity of 100 passengers or more ordered over the last seven years.

Since the company's formation in 1974, CFM has received orders for more than 13,300 engines from 290 customers worldwide at a value of nearly $60 billion. There are currently 10,400 CFM56 engines in service.