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Airbus’ “Space-Flex V2” Concept Increases Cabin Utilization Without Sacrificing Legroom

An innovative design and cabin configuration will allow Airbus to squeeze out extra efficiency while adding special services to the A320.

Airbus believes it can simultaneously squeeze efficiency and add special services by configuring the rear cabin of its A320 aircraft. According to Flight Global, an innovative concept termed “Space-Flex“would redesign and reconfigure the rear of the aircraft to make more efficient use of the space available and allow operators to offer, for the first time, wheelchair accessible washrooms on a single-aisle aircraft.

Space-Flex replaces the current full-width rear galley with a newly designed smaller unit which can accommodate three full-size trolleys plus two half-size trolleys or, alternatively, eight half-size trolleys.

This would free up enough space in the galley area to accommodate the two aft lavatories located at the rear of the economy cabin. In the new configuration, the lavatories would sit side by side with a folding partition wall between them. When required, they can quickly be reconfigured by crew members into a single large washroom, one which is capable of accommodating persons with reduced mobility (PRM). Airbus maintains that the side-by-side washrooms would still be larger than those on rival aircraft. At 3.7 meters, the A320’s maximum cabin width is slightly larger than its rival’s — Boeing 737, which sits at 3.53 meters.

The redesign would also free up space in the rear cabin that would allow operators to either add up to six additional seats or increase the area between existing rows, thereby increasing passenger comfort. Airbus first introduced the Space-Flex optional design concept in 2013 as Space-Flex v1. The new version, v2, will enter service in 2016.

[Photo: Airbus]

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6 Comments
C
CG April 17, 2015

I think they'll use the extra space to put in that onboard bar that I always see in pictures but have never seen in real life!

K
klashn April 16, 2015

When I first looked at the image, it seemed like the increased efficiency came from two toilet stalls in the same lav. I'm glad that isn't happening!

T
TravelingBear April 16, 2015

Most w/c users (if any?) don't have their w/c in the cabin as they are taken to their seats on that narrow rolling chair. So how do they expect w/c users to actually get to that toilet. It's nice idea though not sure how it would play out in real life.

J
JTCz April 16, 2015

How does one even get to those toilets? I am not convinced I am seeing a door there. At any rate - seeing many people determined to find an open a toilet at the back of a Dash-8, or worse yet, unable to open the tricky toilet door at the front and proceeding to try with the crew closet and cockpit door, I am not sure I would feel comfortable knowing that only an easily-foldable partition separates me from another person using the loo...

R
relangford April 16, 2015

Is it possible to even move a wheelchair between the rows of a single-aisle aircraft to get to the improved bathroom? However, this plan does seem to improve things (unless the airlines decide to put in the extra seats).