Boeing is delivering 787s again and American Airlines has 25 of the 787-9 variant originally slated to start entering the fleet in 2023, but delayed. These 787-9s are exciting because American Airlines will debut a new business class seat with doors on this aircraft, and the plane will have more premium seats, and fewer seats overall. I reported in April that the Boeing 787-9 would go from:
- 30 to 51 business class
- 21 to 32 premium economy
- 36 to 18 main cabin extra (this might represent just bulkhead and exit row)
- 198 to 143 economy seats
In total this reflects a reduction of 41 seats, from 285 down to 244.
At the time it still wasn’t clear whether American will use the current Super Diamond seat and add doors like joint venture partner British Airways and now Etihad, or will go with the Adient Ascent seat like Qatar Airways on its Boeing 787-9.
Credit: Adient Aerospace
Aviation insider JonNYC shares photos of the Adient Ascent seat customized for American Airlines:
diff finishes pic.twitter.com/qZNSoCTsrj
— 🇺🇦 JonNYC 🇺🇦 (@xJonNYC) August 19, 2022
I first wrote that American Airlines was considering the Adient Ascent seat in February 2020. It is a fantastic and highly customizable seat. For instance, if an airline so chooses, middle seat passengers can put the privacy divider all the way down so that passengers sleep side-by-side next to each other (thoughtfully both passengers have to push their button for this at the same time in order to prevent it from accidentally happening and to ensure privacy when one passenger doesn’t actually know the other).
American Airlines was showing mockups of the seat to customers before the pandemic, and if these images are new then it is a likely selection for the new 787-9s coming into the fleet. We do know that, whether or not this is the final seat selection, Thales will provide the plane’s seat back entertainment and satellite wifi will come from ViaSat.
And regardless of whether it’s the Adient Ascent seat or the Collins Super Diamond with doors, more business seats and a new seat in new 787s is going to be exciting stuff.