Brussels Airlines has begun replacing seven leased aircraft in its Airbus A330-family long-haul fleet with secondhand A330-300s the Lufthansa Group subsidiary decided to acquire last year.

The transaction “is the most substantial investment made in the 16-year long history of Brussels Airlines,” the Belgian flag carrier said in a statement. “In addition, it’s the first time ever that the airline operates its long-haul flights with aircraft that are owned by the Lufthansa Group and not leased.”

The airline operates six A330-300s and four A330-200s. Of the seven newly acquired A330ceos, four were operated by Cathay Pacific Airways and three by Singapore Airlines, a spokesperson in Brussels told ATW.

Two of the new aircraft began operations in June, the company said, and one of the leased A330s left the fleet Nov. 13, with another set to leave in December. The refleet is scheduled to be finalized by the beginning of 2020.

The new aircraft are equipped with Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines, replacing a mix of engines on the leased aircraft.

Kurt Hofmann, hofmann.aviation@netway.at