In a surprising move, the MSFS team has announced the development of an all-new Airbus A320neo for Microsoft Flight Simulator. The news broke during Microsoft Flight Simulator’s developer livestream, where Jorg Neumann, the head of MSFS, made the announcement. The A320neo is set to be a part of the upcoming Sim Update 14, which is expected to roll out later this month.
A new contender in a crowded market
The A320neo is being built by iniBuilds and is entering a market already populated by other developers like FlyByWire, LatinVFR, and Fenix. Each of these developers has their own take on the A320 family, making the competition stiff. However, iniBuilds is no stranger to the MSFS ecosystem. They previously released an Airbus A310 as part of MSFS’s 40th-anniversary update in 2022.
The A310 was well-received, and the community has high expectations for the A320neo, especially given that it’s being touted to have a similar or even better quality level than the A310.
Jorg Neumann mentioned that the A320neo aims for a level of quality and fidelity similar to iniBuilds’ A310. The A320neo is expected to be on par with this, offering a high level of detail and system complexity.
Coexistence with Asobo’s A320neo
One of the intriguing aspects of this development is that the iniBuilds A320neo will coexist with the Asobo A320neo that was part of the MSFS launch in 2020. The reason for this, according to Neumann, is to avoid breaking the existing challenges and activities within MSFS that feature the Asobo A320neo. Overwriting it would require a significant amount of work to adapt these features to the new model.
Pricing and vailability
While the A320neo is confirmed to be part of Sim Update 14, it’s not yet clear whether it will be a free addition to MSFS. Some speculation suggests it might be part of the “Expert Series,” similar to the ATR 42-600 and 72-600, which are priced in the In-Sim Marketplace. However, the current development roadmap does not indicate any upcoming “Expert Series” aircraft, leaving us to wonder if the A320neo might be a holiday gift from Microsoft to its loyal MSFS user base.
We’ll have to wait for further details about this project in the coming weeks, which are likely to arrive both from Microsoft Flight Simulator and the iniBuilds team. There’s not even a single preview image as of now, so we’ll let you know once more information becomes available!