BY Kai-Chin Shih / 5 APRIL 2014/ TOKYOJAPAN/ talkairlines.wordpress.com
The newest Boeing 777-300ER of the EVA Air fleet, B-16718, has just rolled out from the Boeing paint shop in Washington. Thanks to Andre Nordheim from airplane-pictures.net (http://www.airplane-pictures.net/member-profile.php?p=10962), >talkairlines is able to show viewers the photo of this newest member of the BR family.
Although >talkairlines isn’t particularly interested in the interior since there are not many differences between the old 777 cabin and the new one, we do believe that there is a lot to talk about regarding the livery. From the picture above, one can easily notice that the Chinese version of the company name, usually painted on all EVA Air aircraft, is now gone. This is an interesting move EVA Air has made. The first EVA Air aircraft without Chinese characters is B-16207, one of the airline’s newest Airbus A321s (Delivered late-2013). Since the airline made no remarks on this particular change, when B-16207 rolled out from the Airbus paint shop in Hamburg, >talkairlines speculated that the Chinese words were not painted simply because the airline was going to leave room for a special livery. However, towards late 2013, B-16401, a Boeing 747-400F of EVA Air Cargo, was also given a repaint without any Chinese characters. Now, after the revelation of the livery on B-16718, it is clear that EVA Air has chosen to leave only its English company name on its planes.
EVA Air has not yet released (if they ever will) any statements regarding the abandoning of Chinese characters. However, >talkairlines do believe that it is a part of the airline’s attempt to make its branding more international. In the past few decades, many Asian airlines chose make the change of leaving only English characters on their planes or making the company name in the native language extremely small. Notable examples include China Airlines (Chinese company name now a small artistic red seal next to the English name), ANA (Complete elimination of Japanese company name), and Korean Air (Korean company name now shrank significantly and placed on the front of the plane). These airlines believed that this move can lead foreign passengers into thinking that the companies are not domestic carriers but intercontinental airlines and therefore will attract more international traffic.
EVA Air has been putting lots of efforts on internationalizing its brand image in the past few years. Through joining Star Alliance, re-branding its frequent flyer program, using famous Asian actor Takeshi Kaneshiro in its “I See You” commercial, and spending millions to air the commercial all around the world, EVA Air has announced its transformation into a major global player. The airline has also been rather aggressive in expanding its long-haul network and enhancing its long-haul products. The introduction of the Royal Laurel Class, a complete lie flat business class suite, along with improvements in services (Skytrax Best Cabin Crew in Asia and Travel & Leisure Top 10 Airlines) and more flights to North America than ever (Planning on adding Chicago and Houston to its current NA network of 6 destinations), EVA Air is now a serious competitor to all East Asian carriers. In the near future, >talkairlines do expect to see EVA Air becoming an airline with the same status as prestigious carriers such as Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines.