California-based Brice Seating will supply Spirit Airlines with its "pre-reclined" B3100 Featherweight seat, "designed to provide greater comfort for passengers with less seat weight," Brice Director of sales Jerry Lalone explained. The seats feature a 28" pitch design and 20-25% more under-seat space than other 30" pitch economy seats.

The new seats are being installed on Spirit’s new A320 aircraft; it has taken delivery of two A320s this year with two more arriving in coming months. The 178-seat A320 features 174 leather seats and four Big Front Seats.

"The new leather seats with a greater recline built into the design offer comfort throughout the entire flight as you do not need to put the seat in a full upright position during take-off and landing," Brice said in a press release.  "The new design also offers more space under the seat in front of you."

The seat, more than 30% lighter in weight than other seats according to Brice, means less weight onboard an aircraft, translating into greater fuel efficiency. 178 seats on Spirit’s A320 weigh less than 145 seats on its A319.

Brice said that since the new seats are stationary, customers have appreciated the lack of interference from the seat in front moving up and down throughout the flight. The seats also lend themselves to more secure life vest storage that is easily accessible for customers, Brice said.

“Our customers are thrilled to be traveling on new planes with new seats all while paying substantially lower fares than other airlines,” Spirit Chief Marketing Officer Barry Biffle said.  “In addition to providing an even greater recline and more living space, the lightweight design substantially lowers our fuel consumption, which is one of our greatest operating costs.  As a result, we can pass these cost savings along to our customers.  Ultra low fares are what our customers have come to expect and what we continue to deliver.”

Spirit's additional A320s mark a more than 11% increase in seats year-over-year for the upcoming summer high travel season.  The first new A320 began regular daily non-stop service between Fort Lauderdale and Washington, D.C. on March 14, 2010.  The second began regular daily non-stop service between Fort Lauderdale and LaGuardia on April 12, 2010.

Spirit’s all-Airbus fleet now consists of 26 A319s, two A321s and two A320s.

Photo credits: Brice Seating