Airbus is working on offering a new engine for the A320 Family known as the New Engine Option (NEO). The choice for new engines include the CFM International LEAP-X and the Pratt & Whitney PW1400G/PW1500G. The new engines will burn 16% less fuel: the actual fuel gain on an A320 installation will be slightly less, since 1-2% is typically lost upon installation on an existing aircraft. Airbus CEO said to be "comfortable" with the projections of 20% lower maintenance cost for the Pratt & Whitney's PW1000G family, compared with today's engines.
Additional to the New Engine Option the A320 Family will be modified to represent the new standards in its class. Apart from saving fuel these modifications will improve the flight distance of an A320 by around 500 nautical miles as well as increasing the payload by two tonnes at a given range.
For the environment, the A320neo’s fuel savings translate into some 3,600 tonnes less CO2 per aircraft per year. Additionally, the A320neo will provide a double-digit reduction in NOx emissions and reduced engine noise. The new versions will have over 95 per cent airframe commonality with the existing models, enabling it to fit seamlessly into existing A320 Family fleets – a key factor for Airbus customers and operators.
Airbus plans to deliver the first pieces of the new NEO Family in late 2015.
The Airbus Sharklets featured on the A320neo also will be available for A320 Family jetliners beginning in late 2012. These devices cut down on aerodynamic drag by helping reduce the spiral-shaped vortices that are formed at the wingtips of aircraft during flight. The Sharklets bring more than 3.5 per cent savings in overall fuel consumption on long route sectors to A320 aircraft, while also improving takeoff performance and increasing payload by 500 kg. – allowing for additional range or more passengers to be carried.These devices also should allow for less thrust to be used during takeoff when runway performance is not “limiting,” thereby decreasing airport noise. In addition to their environmental benefits, the Sharklets’ aerodynamic improvements are to provide multiple advantages for operators – including increased range and payload, better takeoff performance and rate-of-climb, higher optimum altitude, reduced engine maintenance costs and higher residual aircraft value.With the popularity of its Sharklets, Airbus also is pursuing a large winglet retrofit option for the in-service fleet of A320 Family jetliners – which will further enhance the fuel efficiency and residual value of these aircraft operated around the world.
Both the New Engine Option and Sharklets will not be available for A318 aircraft.