A330neo more likely: The Financial Times of London has a long interview (including a five minute video) with Airbus Commercial CEO Fabrice Bregier (free registration required) in which he says the launch of the A330neo is becoming more and more likely. It remains unclear (and probably unlikely) that the launch will come next week at the Farnborough Air Show, but we don’t think it will be long afterwards.
Air Lease Corp, CIT Aerospace, Delta Air Lines, AirAsiaX and Virgin Atlantic are among those that have publicly expressed interest in the neo. We’ve heard a couple of other names as well.
Although Bregier told us last month he thought the market potential was about 400-500, he says in the FT article it could be more than 1,000.
We’re told there is still some internal division over proceeding with the program, but at the same time signs are continuing to build that the decision is all but a done deal to do so.
Boeing cockpit commonality: Airbus has for years promoted cockpit commonality across its airplane line as an economic and operational advantage vs Boeing. Given the longevity of Boeing’s product development, the 7-Series hasn’t been a common cockpit, though there have been some common elements.
With the development of the 737 MAX and the 777X, this “disadvantage,” if you want to call it that, is diminishing. In a recent interview with Boeing’s Randy Tinseth, VP Marketing, we asked about this. His response:
I don’t think there is any question that over time we have worked to raise the bar across the flight decks, worked to have common training and transition times and we have minimized transition times. We seamlessly transition from the 737NG to the MAX. We have leveraged the 787 and we have continually moved for more commonality. The 787 and 777 have common type ratings. You take your recurrent training in every other simulator training time. With 777X we will look to gain [even] more commonality. You have to find the right mix between commonality and capabilities.
It’s important but not the biggest swinger in the campaign. It doesn’t drive the answer in an economic campaign.
Monarch Airlines, Boeing and Bombardier: Monarch’s widely reported (but still unofficial) selection of Boeing’s 737 MAX for its re-fleeting probably means Bombardier won’t get a slice of this order, a huge disappointment to BBD, which put up a good fight for the deal. Airbus is the incumbent and this will be an important flip for Boeing. BBD was hoping to get a slice of the pie in any Boeing win for the larger mainline jet, with the CSeries taking the smaller end. But we’re hearing Boeing’s ability to offer better commercial terms for a sweeping package aced out BBD’s ability–or lack of it–to offer a similar commercial deal. BBD had hoped for the deal for next week’s Farnborough Air Show. Instead, the headlines will go to Boeing.
Our Farnborough coverage: Leeham News and Comment will be at the FAS, with reporting by our new European associate. Watch for reporting at the end of each day (UK time).