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American defers Airbus plane deliveries

Two new American Airlines' Airbus A319s, left, sit next to an MD-80 at DFW Airport. American has been purchasing Airbus aircraft to replace its aging fleet of MD-80s. Special/Brandon Wade
Two new American Airlines' Airbus A319s, left, sit next to an MD-80 at DFW Airport. American has been purchasing Airbus aircraft to replace its aging fleet of MD-80s. Special/Brandon Wade Star-Telegram

American Airlines announced Monday that it will defer the delivery of 35 Airbus aircraft.

The Fort Worth-based carrier had originally agreed to buy 10 Airbus A320 new-engine option aircraft in 2017 and another 25 in 2018. American will now receive those aircraft in 2021 through 2023, the company said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing made on Monday.

“The deferrals give us more flexibility on capacity,” said American spokesman Josh Freed in an e-mail.

Under the new agreement, American will not buy any A320neos in 2017 and 2018 and now has 25 A320neo on order for 2019 and a total of 75 A320neo purchase commitments in the next decade.

In 2011, American unveiled its fleet renewal plan that included purchasing 260 Airbus jets, with half of those A320neos.

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