United's new livery on an Airbus A319 (N853UA)

United's new livery on an Airbus A319 (N853UA)

Here is the first Airbus A319 in the new United/Continental Livery. I know it has been quite controversial and many of you readers have totally hated this new United livery. As I have said before, the more I see it, the more I get used to it and the more I like it. I actually think it looks best on this smaller Airbus A319 than it has on the Boeing 777 or in a Boeing 747 mock up. You can check out quite a few photos of the old and new livery of this Airbus A319 on Airliners.net. One exciting part of this combination, is we have never seen the “Continental livery” on an Airbus A320-family aircraft before. Has this “new livery” grown on you at all?

I was emailed this photo a few days ago and have been trying to track down the owner to give proper credit. If you know where this came from, please let me know.

David is the Editor-in-Chief & Founder of AirlineReporter. He has written, consulted, and presented on multiple topics relating to airlines and travel since 2008. He has been quoted and written for a number of news organizations, including BBC, CNN, NBC News, Bloomberg, and others. He is passionate about sharing the complexities, the benefits, and the fun stuff of the airline business. Email me: david@airlinereporter.com

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It hasn’t “grown” on me but I don’t hate the livery like so many people seem to. Either way it’s no worse than United’s past couple liveries. The flying battleships in particular were a pretty depressing-looking fleet.

Yes the battleship grey was a joke.

I don’t know how you can say this isn’t any worse than the last livery, which is far superior to this one. It is around as bad as the battleship livery. I do think it looks better on the smaller planes, but nowhere near as good as the real United livery. I don’t so much hate the livery as I hate the livery with the name United on it. I think it worked fine for Continental, but it doesn’t seem very United-y to me.


But see, I am not a big fan of the “last” United livery (http://www.flickr.com/photos/airlinereporter/4965878976/in/set-72157624771126283/), although I think it looks pretty good on the B757. But I think you have a good point. It is not the livery itself, just the fact that it is not United’s livery that makes people unhappy.


I think this livery is just so bland, and as people were saying when they first announced it, it looks like they gave the artist 5 minutes and the psd of the continental livery. The real United livery has some real color, and looks nice, this is just so monotone except for the tail, which has absolutely nothing to do with the United name.

Speaking of liveries, I’m surprised you haven’t commented on this yet: http://blog.seattlepi.com/aerospace/archives/236894.asp?from=blog_last3

I flew this plane on Saturday from CMH-DEN. The gate agents were taking pics of it since it was the first plane with the new paint job to roll into Columbus. Here’s my pic http://johnnyjet.com/photos/Columbus-Ohio-Jan-2011-97.jpg

Hey Johnny!

Thanks for sharing. Love it in the snow.


And speaking of new liveries…..you’ll need a pic of that new (formerly) Horizon Air Q400 with the Alaska tail and paint to be premiering soon! Yikes…big changes.

You will be seeing that post tomorrow :)


Looks terrible. The CO livery has always been, by far, the worst livery of the legacies and US carriers. WN has a better livery than the world’s largest airline. How pathetic. Good job, $mi$ek.

I think it looks better on the A319 than does on the B777. I just think that if they were going to keep the CO colors then it should at least been updated a bit to be more modern.

I bet they’re hoping the government doesn’t turn down the merger!!!!

Interesting that they converted a UA plane first–you’d think it’s easier to convert a CO A/C. And considering UA still has plenty of their drab grey liveries around, even though they went to white about 6 years ago, I’m amazed that UA would actually take their plane out of service long enough to repaint it! Maybe they have a little more excess aircraft time with the CO merger.

This baby was still in Battleship grey and has needed a re-paint for quite sometime.


I think I first saw this photos last week on the Aero Pacific Flightlines blog, where the photo was credited to Steven Pinnow.


Thank you very much. Trying to see if I can make contact.

It could be better. It says the necessary, but the balance is wrong, perhaps tail heavy? OTOH, does it really matter? Te less paint they have to carry around, the less fuel they burn. I know… it is all theory. Humph. The numbers are real.

Rani Coellonia

Still discussing the choice of the fusion livery for United Continental Airlines/Airways* I’d bring this one in as the right choice for a fusion livery:
(The font of the brand would, of course, be the currently chosen – as on the photo – and not the old version as on the drawing.)

* This would have been the choice for the fusion brand, on my opinion; if not United Continents …

/Ranico, Germany

while i agree that it’s a little bland, when you see it in person it actually looks pretty decent. I connected through IAH yesterday and saw a TON of them in person. I actually like it best on the 777 and (believe it or not) the United Express RJs. The 757 is nice too. I think it looks the worst on the shorter 737’s, looks ok on the 738’s and 739’s. Haven’t seen the A319 in person yet, but it looks ok in the photo.

I used to hate the new livery too, mainly I really hated to see the tulip.

The block UNITED is much better than the old Continental script. Either way, it’s way better than the battleship grey. that was horrible.

oops i meant to say that “I used to hate the new livery too, mainly I really hated to see the tulip go away.”

I don’t think United’s latest livery is really that great. but I loved the tulip on the tail and in front of the UNITED.

First off, that linked to livery is just like what I threw out there the day of the merger: http://twitpic.com/1kq3jr. Secondly, I think it looks best on the RJs and pretty bad on the 777. Overall, new livery sucks and the people who came up with it have the creativity of a 3 year old.

Rich Monahan

I think it looks best on the 319 because the plane is small and therefore the graphics (tail logo and “United” font dominate more of the plane. You put this on a triple 7 or 764, and all the eye catches if the plain white fuselage. On the 319 there seems to be more eye candy. I alwyas liked Continental’s livery but agree whole-heartedly that the merged airlines did really need a new look. But so be it. Beats Delta’s livery.

I prefer the battleship livery, which is going to look even more retro (than it already does) in five years. This new livery is a terrible mashup. I agree with the guy who says it looks like five minutes plus the PSD of the old one.

What you guys fail to realize is that Continental has had a stable livery and brand look for almost 20 years.

United on the other hand has changed their livery 3 times in that time period – who IS the real United? Secondly, why spend millions of dollars to repaint BOTH fleets into a new combined color when now you only have to paint United’s fleet while only changing the name on the Continental fleet. Not to mention that United’s fleet was in different states of upgrade to the new livery. At the end of the day, everyone knows what a Continental plane looks like and everyone knows who United Airlines is – A stable livery with a well known name is the end result.

The combined livery aesthetics is something to be dealt with later, for now the goal is to get both fleets on the same page and provide a unified face to the public for the least amount of money while doing so as quickly as possible. Its a compromise…plain and simple.

Svar Empott

This livery is so much better than any of the “recent” United liveries. Much brighter. Have seen all 4 liveries next to each other, the “Continental” livery looks the best. The latest United livery looks like it is floating through lav juice, just disgusting. Long live the Globe, long live United. Rest in peace Continental, you were a great airline.

Pfft, you’re a COol-Aider shill. The 2004 Livery is so much better than this trash and the Tulip is a far stronger logo than the crappy globe, which will be re-UNITED with crapinentnal in airline hell after $mi$ek is overthrown.

Svar Empott

Ha ha, another failed united weenie. The tulip was for sensitive boys. So glad it has been smashed and wilted on the annals of history. The tulip is dead and tilton is overthrown. Continental has taken over the failure that was ESOP bankrupt united, or was it ted without u n i. united troll, the deathstar is soooo much better than that stupid tulip.

You truly fail at life, just like Continetnal. Long Live the Tulip.

The tulip sucks and you swallow kit. You’re so cool.

The clip art globe is the mark of mediocrity, just like you.

And you are kinda queeer, just like the tulip. I have me a stalker named kit, a wuss. So glad to see the tulip dead.

Dead? You mean like Continental?

Fact: The Tulip is liked far more than the turd ball globe, and you for that matter. Please jump off a bridge and die. Maybe you’ll be re-UNITED with your precious Crapinental.

The ‘tulip’ is dead. Continental took over United. Long live the DeathStar.

Drop dead CO fanboy. United took over CO. Long live the Tulip, death to CO and their fanboys.

Svar Empott

Yes, the Delta new livery is even more bland. Can’t even make out the name on the fuselage from a distance. And what happened to the widget? 2 minute jury-rig job on the Delta livery too then.

George Cheong

Personally, I liked the “Battleship Grey” livery the best. Except the rainbow border between the blue and the grey paint.

it is just a photoshopped United logo into the Continental airlines aircraft.

Bobby Crandall

You have got to kidding!!! Where has Continental been hiding their Airbus fleet all these years?!?

Seriously, Continental has had the BEST livery of any modern (contemporary) US carrier. By far the most dignified and business like.

I always thought Uni Ted’s old new livery was terribly weak, worse than the grey look. I can’t conceive of why some folk actually liked it. But then again, I guess there are folk that think spinner hub caps have a place too.

No matter what you do you jeff the Livery will never grow on any United Airlines passengers. Continental Airlines livery has been the same for way to many years and is has got to go. Uniteds livery with the blue and especially the logo gives you a much better idea of what kind of a flight your going to go on. Personally i have had nothing but the worst experience with continental. If i was jeff i would change all the livery’s back to Uniteds and maybe some back to the battle field colors. That livery would look good on the 737 and especially on the 787. I hate this livery. I feel so lucky that every time i fly with united i always fly an aircraft with United livery all over it. No aircraft in general looks good in that livery. Plus the aircrafts look old with the livery regardless if it was just painted or not. I hope by some magic the old livery comes back. I really miss United Airlines. The real one and not the fake one owned by some cheap C.E.O.

Richard D

Personally I really liked the battle ship grey and hated the last livery with the tulip UA. I love the new livery mainly because the tulips have gone.

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