SIA Hints At 777X Cabin ‘Quantum Leap’; May Replace Some A380 Routes

Boeing 777X demonstrator at the Singapore Airshow.
Credit: Chen Chuanren

Singapore Airlines (SIA) is promising new-to-class cabin products on its Boeing 777Xs when they enter service, with suite-style first-class cabins first seen on the Airbus A380.

The flag-carrier said design work for its 777-9 cabins began in 2018 and is now finalized and awaiting certification.

SIA will offer four classes on the 777-9: first, business, premium economy and economy.

“First class promises to be a quantum leap: more spacious, more comfortable, more luxurious,” SIA VP of product innovation Ng Yung Han said ahead of the Singapore Airshow, where Boeing is featuring a 777X flight test aircraft in the flying display.

“We will have many suite-like features that include more exclusive, private and unique layout that caters to both single and companion travel. For companion travel, we are looking at beyond couple seating,” Ng said.

Other features include new technologies that SIA says will make the cabin one of the smartest in the industry and for which the airline has filed patents to protect its intellectual property.

Ng said the SIA project team has worked closely with Boeing in Seattle. With the 777X test aircraft in Singapore for the first time, some of the airline’s operational and ground crews have been able to get close up to the aircraft. He added that the pandemic has given SIA time to revisit and fine tune some of the seat designs and concepts and the outcome will be a “more robust, more well thought through” cabin product.

SIA is one of three Asian customers for the 777X, with 31 on order. The other two are Cathay Pacific and All Nippon Airways.

A SIA spokesperson added that when delivered, the 777X will “replace some of its larger widebody aircraft when they are due for retirement in the coming years” signaling the Airbus A380s, which also have four cabin classes.

Chen Chuanren

Chen Chuanren is the Southeast Asia and China Editor for the Aviation Week Network’s (AWN) Air Transport World (ATW) and the Asia-Pacific Defense Correspondent for AWN, joining the team in 2017.