If you were wondering what Southwest had in store after its teaser Tweet yesterday, wonder no more. The airline has selected seats from B/E Aerospace for its new 737MAX fleet as well as upcoming 737-800 deliveries beginning in mid-2016. Here’s a look at the seats. (Images courtesy of Southwest Airlines)
“The new aircraft seats are the widest economy seats available in the single-aisle 737 market, and offer a unique design that gives our Customers what they asked for: more space,” said Bob Jordan, Southwest’s Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. “Serving as the launch customer for this seat is just one of several upcoming milestones related to our bold, new look launched in September of last year, and is specifically aimed at enhancing our Customer Experience.”
Southwest says these will be wider than current seats (a good thing for narrow-body Boeings), offer enhanced legroom and storage, and still allow the airline to reduce the overall weight of the seat. From a personal perspective, the seats look nice, but how tightly they pack them in will tell us how comfortable they really are. Finally, I had hoped to see a power solution from Southwest, perhaps a USB charging solution. Looks like that is an amenity that Southwest will continue to lack. The bottom line – the new seats look pretty nice, but we’ll see how they work out comfort-wise once they’re installed and flying.
-MJ, April 14, 2015