Boeing 737 MAX as a new option for Croatia Airlines’ fleet renewal?

In the process of renewing Croatia Airlines’ fleet, a new and unknown option to the Croatian public has emerged. As AvioRadar exclusively finds out, Croatia Airlines is in talks with Boeing about the potential purchase of aircraft from the 737 MAX family. A Boeing spokesman confirmed to AvioRadar:

“We are currently in discussion with Croatia Airlines regarding its future fleet requirements and single-aisle renewal. We strongly believe that the 737 MAX family of airplanes is the perfect choice for Croatia Airlines’ short to medium-haul network. The 737 MAX offers unrivaled efficiency for smaller markets with the ability to increase capacity across the family seamlessly in order to meet the significant growth in demand that we expect the Croatian market to experience in the coming years.”

Boeing currently offers 4 aircraft models within the 737 MAX family, namely 737 MAX 7, 737 MAX 8, 737 MAX 9, and 737 MAX 10.

The 737 MAX 7 is the smallest aircraft in the MAX series, with a typical 138 to 153 seat configuration. The range in kilometers is 7,130, and the catalog price of the aircraft is 99.7 million USD.

The 737 MAX 8 is an aircraft with a configuration of 162 to 178 seats, with a range of 6,570 km and a catalog price of 121.6 million USD.

The 737 MAX 9 offers a typical 178-193 seat configuration and a range of 6,570 km with a built-in additional fuel tank. The list price is $ 128.9 million.

The 737 MAX 10 is the largest in the 737 MAX series of aircraft, with a configuration of 188 to 204 seats and a range of 6,110 km also with a built-in additional fuel tank. The cost of the largest aircraft from the MAX aircraft family is $ 134.9 million.

In terms of characteristics and configuration, the most similar Boeing aircraft in terms of aircraft presented to Croatia Airlines, A220, and E-195E2, is the 737 MAX 7, for which there are currently 3 customers in the world: Allegiant Air with 30 aircraft ordered, Southwest with 234 737 MAX 7 orders and Canadian WestJet with an order of 22 aircraft. A total of 286 737 MAX 7 aircraft have been ordered, and aircraft certification and entry into passenger traffic are expected in late 2022 or early 2023.

It should be reminded that at the end of last year, Airbus and Embraer publicly presented their A220-300 and E-195E2 aircraft to Croatia Airlines, but the owner of CTN (Government of the Republic of Croatia) has not yet approved a new strategic plan that includes fleet renewal.

Until the final decision on the renewal of the fleet, it remains to be seen whether there will be a kind of “return to the future”, where Croatia Airlines returns to the fleet of Boeing 737, of which (older models 727-200 Adv.) the fleet of national carrier consisted in the ’90s.