Irish low-cost carrier Ryanair is apparently changing the branding on its not-yet-delivered Boeing 737 MAX airplanes.
This was unveiled when the fifth Boeing 737 MAX due to be delivered to Ryanair was rolled out of the paint shop, registered as EI-HAY. Photos show that, instead of ‘737 MAX’ written on the front left and right sides of the aircraft, the airplane now says ‘737-8200’.
Normally, this aircraft type is branded as ‘Boeing 737 MAX’ or just ‘737 MAX’, as it is the case with Ryanair’s previous four 737 MAX 200, which are all yet to be delivered.
737-8200 is not a completely new name for this aircraft type. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) had been referring to the ‘737-8200’ in selected documents since 2015. And even the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Boeing had been using the identification in some instances for at least two years. Still, what is new is the usage of 737-8200 on the airplane’s branding that is visible to the public.
The airline has likely knowingly decided to change the designation that is painted on its new airplanes, due to the ongoing grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX, which has severely affected passenger’s trust in the airplane.
Ryanair Holdings has 135 Boeing 737 MAX 200 on order. The MAX 200 is based on the regular 189-seat MAX 8 but is certified to carry up to 200 passengers, thanks to an additional emergency exit on each side of the aircraft. The European low-cost carrier currently operates a fleet of more than 450 current generation Boeing 737-800. The Boeing 737 MAX 200 was originally due to enter commercial service with Ryanair in May 2019. Due to a delivery stop of the aircraft type, it is still unknown when the airline will receive its first frame of this new type.
Jakob Wert is an aviation journalist from Germany. He built up the website IFN.news and is the Editor-In-Chief of International Flight Network.