COMAC chooses LEAP-X, Russians pick GTF

China’s COMAC selected the CFM International LEAP-X engine to power its new challenge to Airbus and Boeing, the C919 150-200 seat jet, two sources tell us.

Now comes news that Russia’s Irkut selected the Pratt & Whitney P1000G Geared Turbo Fan (GTF) to power its 150-200 seat jet, the MS-21. Both planes have a projected EIS of 2016.

This has implications for Airbus and Boeing. Both companies are pondering whether to re-engine the A320 and 737 families and are holding talks with CFM (Airbus and Boeing), PW (Airbus and Boeing), International Aero Engines (Airbus) and Rolls-Royce (Airbus). We firmly believe Airbus and Boeing will decide next year to re-engine the airplanes.

AirInsight is about to release a report on the re-engine prospect.

Aviation Week just posted this story that United Airlines will evaluate Bombardier’s CSeries, equipped with the GTF, for its 100-200 seat RFP to be issued next year. (No surprise.) UAL previously said it will look at Embarer’s EJets. AirInsight believes Airbus and Boeing will offer UAL re-engined airplanes rather than conventional aircraft. With production lines largely sold out for the A320 and 737 for five years anyway, the timing is just about right to introduce RE models.

6 Comments on “COMAC chooses LEAP-X, Russians pick GTF

  1. Yes, Boeing will squeeze every last 737 out of Renton that it possibly can.

    It has no choice as it has no money for the development costs of a replacement. Only one time charges and debt sales keep it from sinking into the red. And the Charlston decision is ruinous enough to profits in combination with Boeing’s other mistakes that by my estimate, the breakeven point on 787 is somewhere in the area of the entire current backlog.

    Here’s hoping for a first flight bounce to 65, then I’m gone.

    Because even if it flies and flies well, Boeing is going to blow the production ramp up. badly. mark my words, make a note of it. If you don’t beleive then just ask yourself:

    When was the last time Boeing ramped up production rates on a jetliner model in any meaningful way, without huge problems? And we are talking aircraft of conventional construction, not something totally new, spread out over tens of thousands of miles, with a large percentage coming form a scratch workforce with no experience in a new facility.

    As for the Chinese and the Russian aircraft. Any western airline contemplating them is absolutly insane. No matter what powerplants they equip them with.

    • Boeing short on money?

      Elsewhere ( Flightglobal ) MTOW increases
      ( to reach advertised ranges ) and a return
      to the -8 wing for the 787-9 model ( after 2/3
      incremental steps that extended wingspan )
      have been announced.

      Selection of the narrower wing was linked to
      results from the halfwing load until failure test.

      this sounds a bit like bull.
      Being overextended is an expalantory alternative
      I have to think about.

  2. You can look at Boeing’s balance sheet and say to yourself it isn’t so bad.

    But the you go back and look at where it was 18 months ago, the bonds it’s sold since, and the charges it’s taken, the buyback that was cancelled, and the dilutive effects of pushing BA stock into it’s pension funds.

    Then one must conclude that that it’s balance sheet is something of a high wire act. The company won’t go bankrupt, it can still sell bonds at will, but the shareholder will continue to get screwed if he’s long. BA is no longer an investment, it’s a trade. You can’t trust in it’s forward earnings projections, because the one time charges it takes (rather than showing a program in a loss position) make them meaningless and unpredictable. You can only trade the stock based on the emotion and hype, and not fundamentals.

    The near complete lack of insider buying, and or willingness to hold BA options or grants of stock by it’s executives and board members is the tell.

    McNerny himself is a net seller of BA, but a huge buyer of Procter and Gamble, for whom he is a board member.

    The only way Boeing could pay for R+D on a clean sheet replacemtn for 737 or 777 would be to twist forgiegn government arms for (risk sharing) monies, (aka subsidies) massive bond sales or a new stock offering. None of which improve it’s revenues, and give only temporary salve to the bottom line.

  3. Both the A320 & 737 carry the potential to being re-engined and whilst neither is that simple the A320 With its higher wing and extended ground clearance lends its self to being the much less taxing conversion.

    The 737NG is not so clear cut and poses severe problems in any new engine selection, Boeing are unable to merge the engine any further into the wing and the 737’s lower wing doesn’t help the process with existing 737NG pods already bordering on marginal ground clearance tolerances.

    The problem is so severe for Boeing they could be forced to move earlier to a 737 replacement to counter the more flexible 320

  4. I would be careful with any RE announcements. As there are still open slots up to 2016 (projected EIS of C919 or MS-21) Boeing and Airbus will be careful in discouraging airlines from ordering current B737 and A320. As soon as A or B announce a re-engine the orders will drop. You never want to be the last one to receive a special aircraft type.

    However, as MS-21 and C919 both look like basically a reverse-engineered A320, their outlok versus a re-engined A320 is grim. At least they gonna have a hard time to score any substantial foreign sales.

  5. Off topic:

    Airbus A400M maiden flight was successful today Dec 12, 2009 in Seville Spain.

    Now will follow a tough 6-month flight-testing program, during wich soft- and hardware of the aircraft will be improved and enhanced iteratively along measurement results.

    The A400M program is 2 years late and already suffers from a 25% cost overrun. It is unprofitable for EADS.

    Defense officials of customer countries are meeting on the fringes of the first flight. They are and trying to hammer out a mutually acceptable deal with EADS until year end.

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