Spirit Airlines to ground seven aircraft due to Pratt & Whitney’s new engine problem -CEO

CHICAGO (Reuters) -Spirit Airlines will have to ground seven Airbus’ A320neo jets after the Labor Day holiday in September through the end of the year due to a snag with RTX’s Pratt & Whitney Geared Turbofan (GTF) engines, Chief Executive Officer Ted Christie said on Thursday.

RTX last week said a “rare condition” in powdered metal meant 1,200 of more than 3,000 engines built for the twin-engined Airbus A320neo between 2015 and 2021 have to be taken off and inspected for micro cracks that would point to fatigue.

Christie on an earnings call warned that the grounding of the planes would affect its revenue in September.

He said Spirit is the largest operator of GTF-powered NEO aircraft in the United States.

“Exposure to this issue is very unique and material for us and is having an impact on our margin,” Christie said.

(Reporting by Rajesh Kumar Singh; Editing by Mark Porter and Jonathan Oatis)