02 November 2012

Air NZ Link's newest aircraft...

Mount Cook Airline has been handed over its new ATR 72-600 ZK-MVA... The following are a couple of articles that detail the implications of introduction of the new "All Black" aircraft...

Mount Cook Airlines is soon to begin scheduled flights through Taranaki. The airline, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Air New Zealand, will begin flying 68-seat ATR72 planes to New Plymouth airport. They will replace some of the existing flights currently operated by fellow subsidiary Air Nelson with its 50-seat Q300 aircraft. According to Air New Zealand's latest flight schedules it will all begin on Monday October 29 when the first ATR will fly from Auckland to New Plymouth. The bigger planes mean 72 extra seats will be available each day, easing a major shortage of seats on scheduled flights through New Plymouth at critical times. But it will also put more pressure on an already overcrowded New Plymouth airport terminal, which may force the New Plymouth District Council to expand the building earlier than planned. Airport manager Kevin Hill said the arrival of the larger planes - with more expected to take over other existing flights in the near future - has the potential to add more than 30,000 people a year to the passenger traffic through New Plymouth. "As a result we might need to bring planned expansion of the terminal forward 12 to 18 months," he said. "We've already increased the availability of parking for cars and rental cars, but it's likely that soon we're going to have to get stuck into the terminal itself. There are already plans in place for upstairs offices, small conference rooms, a viewing deck, and expansion of the ground floor area towards the control tower." Mr Hill added that as passenger numbers grow, it is also likely some form of departure lounge will have to be provided to meet security requirements." The first ATRs to land at New Plymouth will not be the brand-new 600-Series models that are now starting to arrive in the country as part of a $340 million purchase deal by Air New Zealand, but older 500-Series planes that have been here for several years. Yesterday Air New Zealand said the first of the new ATR aircraft will enter into service next month and will share flying duties between ports serviced by Mount Cook Airline services. The first aircraft to arrive will be in Air NZ's all black livery. Subsequent aircraft will be in the new Air New Zealand livery of white with a black tail.
Source :
http://www.stuff.co.nz/taranaki-daily-news/news/7824916/Taranaki-to-get-bigger-aircraft, 17 October 2012

Air New Zealand's first new-generation ATR 72-600 aircraft has been handed over in Toulouse, France today, decked out in the airline’s famous 'all black' livery. The aircraft is the first of its kind for Air New Zealand which has a total of seven on order with options to purchase a further five for a total list price of US$270 million. Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe says the aircraft hand over, which took place overnight New Zealand time, is a significant milestone in the airline's ongoing commitment to growing the key domestic sector. "The ATR 72-600 order potentially doubles the size of Air New Zealand's ATR fleet and will put two million additional regional seats into the market," says Mr Fyfe. "The investment in these aircraft, along with a considerable outlay in purchasing both Bombardier Q300 and Airbus A320 aircraft for the domestic fleet, comes during a period when other businesses have shied away from significant investment in assets. "We firmly believe in the importance of the domestic market and the long-term strength of the New Zealand economy" The first ATR 72-600 aircraft will enter Air New Zealand subsidiary Mount Cook's fleet in mid November. Mount Cook General Manager Sarah Williamson says the new ATRs will allow the airline to further expand its domestic operations with increased frequency and extra capacity as well as to service new ports. "This first aircraft will service Nelson and New Plymouth in addition to the ports where the ATR 72-500 currently flies. Nelson and New Plymouth have both demonstrated recent growth and we're responding by upgrading some services to the larger ATR aircraft. "The flow-on effect of having additional ATR aircraft in Air New Zealand's domestic fleet means we will have the flexibility to up-gauge some Bombardier Q300 and Beech operated routes, as more capacity is required over the coming years, and further stimulate demand in these regions." The new-generation ATR72-600 is the most efficient aircraft in its class and features a new cabin layout in Air New Zealand's latest interior colour palette of chalk and ink, larger overhead bins, and advanced cockpit technology. The new aircraft will enter service for Mt Cook in mid November.


  1. That paint job is horrible

  2. Nothing wrong with it. It looks to be the same as Eagles ZK-EAG 1900D. That is one hot looking plane!!!

  3. Not sure where the idea is it will operate out of Auckland to the places mentioned. Numerically its arrival means that ATR aircraft will operate more frequently ex Auckland to the provinces but not with the ATR-600 series. It will be based out of Christchurch and we can expect to see it "around the traps" on training flights leading up to its intro to service on 14Nov.