I would also argue that Macbook Air was the first laptop ever since it was the first truly portable - not just transportable personal computer ever. For the first time a notebook was light, performant and run long enough on battery to be actually usable out of your office or home.
Yep, the screen is not retina but it's also significantly lighter, thinner and has longer battery life.
The design, so perfect that hasn't changed since 2010.
With every previous laptop I would have just taken it as a good moment to buy a new device, but I honestly don't see the point right now.
The Air was easily Apple's greatest laptop in my opinion. They made the perfect compromises on size, weight, and performance for my use case.
I was hoping when they released the MacBook it would continue the tradition... but that price! I wanted a Retina screen, but after comparing specs and price with the 13" MBPr, the pro was the clear winner, and a pretty great laptop too. No way I'm getting a touchbar though, and with Mac alternatives like the Pixel pushing touch screen / tablet mode... I might have to go back to the Air.
It's shape also allows more casual usage, there's something magical about being able to pick a laptop with one hand and swing it.