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Malaysia Airlines unveils newly-refurbished Boeing 737-800 cabin

Aviation Updates Philippines – Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB) has unveiled its newly-refurbished business class and economy class cabins for its Boeing 737-800 NG (New Generation) aircraft, with the airline describing the new interiors as a "progressive step towards the future."

Photo by Anna Zvereva on Wikimedia Commons
The reconfigured Boeing 737-800 NGs have a total of 174 seats, including 12 business class seats (down from 16) in a 2-2 configuration and 162 economy class seats (up from 144) in a 3-3 configuration. Both cabins feature all-new, lightweight leather-upholstered seats in the airline's signature blue color, along with batik-inspired motifs. Passengers in both cabins can also enjoy better legroom thanks to the slimmer seats.

"We are thrilled to roll out the newly refreshed B737-800 NG, which will deliver future travel experiences through innovative features from seats to highly customizable inflight entertainment while staying true to our roots by incorporating Malaysian elements in the overall interior cabin design," said Lau Yin May, MAB's Chief Marketing and Customer Experience Officer. "The cabin refurbishment exercise began in 2021, a bold step taken by the airline in response to feedback and suggestions received through customer surveys and various focus group sessions in 2020 to better understand the needs of our customers."

Photo by Malaysia Airlines
All business class seats are equipped with AC, USB-A, and USB-C power outlets, a six-way adjustable headrest, a coat hook, a calf-rest, additional storage space, and a bottle holder, while seat pitch has been reduced from 42" to 39". Additionally, the business and economy class cabins will be now separated by a smaller, lighter divider instead of a proper bulkhead.

Photo by Malaysia Airlines
Economy class seats, meanwhile, are equipped with USB-A and USB-C power outlets and seatback pockets. Seat pitch will remain the same at 30".

Photo by Malaysia Airlines
Both business and economy class seats will no longer feature personal in-flight entertainment screens. Instead, passengers must use their personal devices to stream the airline's selection of movies, TV shows, music, podcasts, and more. For passengers' convenience, all seats are fitted with a small fold-down tray where smartphones or tablets may be placed.

Photo by Malaysia Airlines

Photo by Malaysia Airlines
According to MAB, the new cabins will help make the planes 679 kilograms lighter than before, which will in turn allow the company to reduce its fuel consumption by around 91,000 liters per aircraft per year.

“It is becoming increasingly important that we do everything with sustainability in mind. The all-new features of our refreshed B737-800 NG fleet will reduce our carbon footprint from the reduction of the weight of each aircraft – with the much lighter seats, use of soft cabin dividers and moving away from seatback screens to offer innovative in-flight entertainment features allowing for wireless streaming on board at their convenience,” said Lau.

The first newly-refurbished aircraft is expected to enter service on short-haul routes out of Kuala Lumpur later this month. MAB said that it expects the 737-800 NG cabin refresh to be completed by mid-2023.

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