Is it a flying zebra? Is it a ninja plane! Perhaps a top-secret stealth jet for the Royal New Zealand Air Force? Nope, it’s … Air New Zealand’s new A320 jet with its all black rugby-themed paint job!
“In celebration of Air New Zealand’s long running support of rugby in New Zealand, our first new A320 will arrive in January sporting a sleek black livery complete with silver fern motif and Koru on its tail,” Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe announced last week. The airline is entering its 17th year of supporting the New Zealand Rugby Football union and the All Blacks, New Zealand’s national team.
Only one of the airline’s new planes will sport the custom paint job. The unique All Black jet will go into service in February 2011 on New Zealand’s main domestic routes, and Fyfe hopes some Australians will get to ride it. “Who knows, some Australian sports teams might just find themselves on this aircraft as they fly around the country to get to their games over the coming months,” Fyfe slyly speculated.
In addition to its new domestic fleet of A320 aircraft, Air New Zealand’s also getting a new long-haul fleet of Boeing 777-300 aircraft starting at the end of this year. The airline is striving to have one of the youngest aircraft fleets in the world, but is also really into connecting with rugby fans. They also produced this rather colorful rugby-themed safety video for their domestic flights: