Design case: vantage xL

Thompson Aero Vantage XL (II) 650px

(Aisle: Design solution provides premium passengers with flat beds and aisle access. Image source: DBA)


The Vantage XL aircraft seating system is an internationally successful aircraft premium seating system designed by Factorydesign for Thompson Aero Seating of Northern Ireland.

The design has opened up new markets and won new customers for Thompson, increasing their status with Airbus and Boeing, and helping to grow export sales and employment in Northern Ireland.

The XL design solution enabled airlines to be able to meet the demands of providing premium passengers with forward facing, fully horizontal lie-flat beds whilst avoiding the need for anyone to have to  "step over" neighbouring passengers to access a plane aisle.

The solution offered direct access to the aisle for all premium passengers, along with increased set and bed width, and a wide variety of customisable stowage options. 

Thompson has been able to sell customised versions to different airline customers such as Scandinavian Airlines.

Thomson Aero Vantage XL 600px

The design was the subject of an award-winning entry in the 2016 DBA Design Effectiveness Awards.  According to this case study, Thompson sales have increased from £20.7m in 2013 to £51.8m in 2015, with orders from Qantas, Scandinavian and a large US carrier.