Air New Zealand has announced the ALIA as the airline’s first purchase of a next-generation aircraft in its Mission Next Gen Aircraft programme. Designed by electric aerospace company BETA Technologies, the battery-powered all-electric aircraft is expected to join Air New Zealand’s fleet in 2026. Air New Zealand is purchasing the conventional take-off and landing version of the ALIA.
The announcement follows an 18-month period of evaluation and diligence by Air New Zealand. Through the airline’s Mission Next Gen Aircraft programme, it sought and received ideas and insights from 30 organisations, selecting four partners to work closely with on its goal of launching commercial flights using next-generation aircraft in 2026. BETA’s ALIA is the first commercial order in the programme.
“This is a small but important step in a much larger journey for Air New Zealand,” said Greg Foran, Chief Executive Officer, Air New Zealand. “There is a lot of work ahead of us, but we are incredibly committed, and this purchase marks a new chapter for the airline. Decarbonising aviation isn’t easy, and we have a lot of work to do. We need to accelerate the pace of change in the technology, infrastructure, operations and regulation. While this aircraft will add to, not replace our existing fleet, it is a catalyst for that change. By flying the ALIA, we hope to advance our knowledge and the transformation needed in the aviation system in Aotearoa for us to fly larger, fleet replacing, next-generation aircraft from 2030.”
Kyle Clark, Chief Executive Officer, BETA, commented: “Air New Zealand is hyper-focused on bringing technologies to scale as quickly as possible, both to meet its own ambitions to decarbonise and to change the broader aviation landscape. Over the past year plus of partnership, collaboration, and diligence, we’ve seen Air New Zealand’s forward-thinking, yet pragmatic and methodical approach to innovation. We are gratified by the airline’s confidence in our technology as a solution that will meet their operational needs and look forward to continuing to work hand-in-hand as we bring the ALIA to market for 2026.”