Dubai Airshow 2023: SunExpress orders 90 Max aircraft 

SunExpress CEO Max Kownatzki pressed the red button and signed for up to 90 Max aircraft  at the show today with Boeing president Stan Deal.

Describing the occasion as a “CEO dream day” and a “historic moment” for the Lufthansa-Turkish Airlines joint venture airline, Kownatzki said SunExpress has placed firm orders for 45 737 Max 8s with a further five options, in addition to 40 purchase rights on the type. The firm orders can be substituted for the larger Max 10 version if the airline chooses, he noted.

The order will help fast-growing SunExpress more than double its fleet in the next decade with deliveries taking place between 2029 and 2035.

The order is the largest in its history and supplements an existing 737 Max order with nine of 42 in that deal already delivered, with the remaining 33 arriving between now and 2028.

This deal has been under negotiation for 12 months beginning with talks at a fish restaurant in Izmir, said Kownatzki, who once worked a consultant for Boeing.

In a light-hearted moment he gave Boeing Commercial Airplanes president Stan Deal a commemorative photograph of a city skyline to remind him that SunExpress should be high up on its delivery schedule. “Our relationship is characterised by trust and collaboration,” said Kownatzki.

Antalya-based SunExpress currently operates 66 Boeing aircraft on 175 destinations in 30 countries.