Sunday, 22 September 2019

The SAS new livery - bold and new or bland and boring?

For the first time in 21 years, Scandinavian Airlines System Denmark-Norway-Sweden, more simply known as just SAS, or Scandinavian, has launched a brand livery design for its aircraft exterior as part of a brand revamp.

The new paintwork is supposed to be a modern take on classic Scandinavian design as well as a highlight towards the future of SAS, it's brand he new Airbus A350 and A320neo aircraft, which are the first to feature the new design. It follows new cabin and onboard concepts that were introduced in 2015. 

“The new livery design is a symbol of our future, a more sustainable and competitive future for SAS, but one that also embraces our heritage. Travellers from Scandinavia will recognize their home, while global travellers will encounter the renowned feeling of the Nordics,” says Rickard Gustafson, President and CEO at SAS at the launch of the new paint job earlier this week. 

According to the firm,  analysis shows passengers are proud to be part of the SAS community and that the 'unique' blue colour and the logo, are among the strongest elements when travellers highlight their feelings towards the SAS brand, which isn't exactly a surprise. 

They say the new livery embraces this unique relationship by extending the blue colour of the tail further down the fuselage and by adding a new big silver SAS logo to the front of the aircraft.  “Crucial to the successful relationship with our travelers is the thousands of SAS employees who provide passengers with top-class travel experiences and service every day. They are the face of our brand and their commitment is key to a more sustainable and competitive future,” Rickard Gustafson says.

The roll-out of the new SAS livery will follow the normal maintenance program of the aircraft, meaning the existing fleet will be updated with the new livery in accordance to an already scheduled repaint process every 5-6 years, so it will take until the end of 2024 for the entire fleet to be repainted.  

The new Airbus 350 and Airbus 320neo, the market’s most modern and fuel-efficient aircraft, will be among the first to feature the new livery. In total, as a part the modernization of the short and long-haul fleet, SAS will take delivery of new Airbus 320neo (80), Airbus 330 Enhanced (5), Airbus 350 (8), and Airbus 321LR (3) aircraft before the end of 2023.

But is the new livery bold and new or bland and boring?  We showed a number of airline passengers to find out what they thought of the new paint job!

"It looks ok,  but not exciting." Michael, Kent.

"Oh, another mostly white aircraft - how original." Hellen, London.

"Is it part of that German airline?  Looks just like their aircraft!" Sander, Eindhoven.  
(We think Sander is referring to Lufthansa after its recent brand renewal and there is a certain similarity, although perhaps a subtle shade of blue difference.)

"Dull, not colourful enough for me." Claire, Essex.

Our own aviation correspondent, Jason Shaw, wasn't too impressed, "It hardly excites the senses or offers anything different to many other carriers that are adopting simpler liveries.  There are some key aspects that are good, for example, the way they have followed Emirates lead, with featuring its name in big bold lettering on the bottom of the fuselage. The big silver SAS towards the front harks back to an older design, back when they had the bright stripes going downwards in colours of the Nordic nations. The dark blue is so similar to Lufthansa, British Airways and others to stand out as a clearly defined brand identity."  

I rather like the clean lines,  the flashy silver, the colour of the flags down the back.  I wish the blue had been lighter and the 'Scandianian' lettering on the undercarriage reversed in colour so it would stand out more in the air, but overall, I like it.

What do you think?  Is it a bold, new take on a brand with a rich heritage or just a bland and boring homogenised look?

Recommended for you...

No comments: