MAX v NEO, continued

Aspire Aviation has another long piece analyzing the two airplanes.

Aerotubropower takes issue with some of Aspire’s analysis in this piece. Aeroturbopower cites publicly available information from Turkish Airlines that is particularly noteworthy in the debate between Airbus and Boeing about  the A320 v 737.

39 Comments on “MAX v NEO, continued

  1. Hello Scott
    One point is the empty increase that seems to be +1000 / +1500 lbs more on the “lighter” MAX than on the heavy “NEO”. Noteworthy
    And Aspire Aviation rumor mill on the sharklets efficiency

    The real challenge right now is milking as much range as possible on 737-MAX9 and A321NEO for those Transatlantic 757 operators

    Have a good day

  2. I don’t hope so much from “sharklet” performances, may be 0,5 to 1 point better than expected !
    But I think, it’s too early to have a firm estimation of the A321 definitive data !

    I’m sure Airbus have still a lot of time to improve the A321NEO, and may wait until Boeing freeze the B739 MAX, before announcing some improvements …
    The wings are going to be modified, mainly for the flaps … the A350 way !

    Personally I hope these wings may be extensively modified, some more sq feet, more fuel, and more Al-Li parts … Airbus has the time to make it !

    Airbus has just contracted another very huge quantity of Al-Li to Alcoa … after an enormous order to Constellium … two month ago !
    I’m very impressed , and guessing where these two mountains of Al-Li, may land ?

    • Not really. The B-787 uses no bleed air at all. The electric bleed systems for the Leap-1A engines just use more electric controlled valves, as opposed to pneumatic controlled valves.

  3. I just don’t see the A-321-Sharklet adding any more efficency than the blended winglets of the B-737NG. The NG winglets provide about a 3%-4% improvement in range (average is 3.5%), yet Airbus claims the sharklets will provide a 5% improvement in range. The B-737NG has a more modern and efficently designed wing compared to even the improved 2010 A-320OEO wing. Sorry, I just don’t see that other 1.5% range improvement Airbus is claiming for a sharklet A-320OEO.

    I also don’t see either the B-737-9MAX or A-321NEO having the range and payload capasicity to make them a TATL airplane that matches today’s B-757-200ERW.

  4. Winglet’s speaking …
    I think every body play with the mean distances, and it may vary in the case of Airbus from zero to 5% between some hundred Nm, and the full range, it’s very subjective and everybody has it’s own manipulation !

    Sure, TopBoom, they are today, A, and B, far away from the true B757 capabilities … just closing enough to fight for some of the “Easiest” TATL …routes !

    I think Airbus has some time left (3-4 years) to improve heavily the A321 wing, to get a true TATL plane, without impairing the belly capacity for containers …
    But, it’s worth 4-500 millions … time will tell !

    • The A-321 uses the exact same wing as other models in the A-32X family, 112′ wingspan and a wing area of 1320 sqft. and a sweep of 25 degrees. Sharklets will add about 6′ to the wingspan. The wingspan of the B-737NG family (no winglets) is about 1/2 foot wider, but has 21 more sqft of wing area (1341 sqft), swept at 25.2 degrees, on a lighter weight airframe. The blended winglets add another 6′ to the wingspan.

  5. the TATL 757s have 4100nm range, the neo or max or far from close to this.

  6. The B757 would be 4700-4800 Nm plane with a PW GTF !
    Too late !

    The main problem of the B737 is it can’t grow much in MTOW … unless large structural changes!
    And the A321, cant grow without additional tanks, unless large changes in the wing …
    Let see what happens first … may be the NSA !

    • The GTF does not have enough thrust for a TATL B-757W as it currently is configuered. The GTF highest thrust version only has 33,000 lbs of thrust and the minumum thrust needed for TATL ops on the B-757 is 40,000 lbs. These B-757s are equipped with PW-2040s, PW-2043s, RR RB-211-535E4s, or RB-211-535E4Bs with a MTOW of 255,000 lbs or more.

  7. “The NG winglets provide about a 3%-4% improvement in range (average is 3.5%), yet Airbus claims the sharklets will provide a 5% improvement in range.”

    ?! haven’t seen Airbus claimi g this. Can you provide a link?

  8. No Keesje, it comes somewhat extrapolated from Aspire !
    But above 3000 nm it may be logical … since 3,5 % is an average for shorter leaps !

  9. From Aspire …

    According to Aspire Aviation‘s multiple sources at the world’s largest aircraft manufacturer, the fuel burn performance of the sharklets has exceeded initial expectations by 1%-1.5%, thereby resulting in a net block fuel burn saving of 5.5%-6% when compared to an A320 without any winglet device, or 4.5%-5% when compared to a wingtip fence-equipped A320 (“The showdown in re-engined narrowbody battle begins“, 13th Jun, 12).

    “Multiple sources ” Hum … but may be not untrue for a long haul … of 3000 Nm +
    And … may be the same for the B737 …

    • Airbus had little choice but to “leak” this newly discovered performance from the Sharklet after Boeing announced the new feathered tip for the MAX. Until Airbus is willing to advertise this performance, it is little more than vapor ware.

      • Not so fast, Kemosabe. We’ve known about the 1.5% extra on sharklets long before the Advanced Technology Winglets.

      • The feathered tip is not so new in fact. It looks flashy in the advertisements and you can talk a lot about it in the different fanboy forums. The bottom line is that the physics are the same for Airbus/Boeing and all the others. I personally don’t believe that the MAX will gain an additional 1.5% block fuel saving compared to the blended winglet from aviation partners.
        Here you can find a nice article about wingtip devices from a Boeing engineer:

        It is from 2005 and a graph shows results of a CFD campaign including a feathered tip. That was in the frame of the 737NG winglet investigations leading to the selection of blended winglets. Having chosen the blended winglet design over the feathered tip for the 737NG must have had a reason. Advancements in CFD calculation methods in the last ten years are a reality, but a jump in efficiency by 1.5% block fuel to a really well designed blended winglet…. I don’t think so.

        The Boeing article from 2005 concludes with a nice phrase: ‘This may be one of few places on an airplane configuration where a design decision can, at least sometimes, be based on styling without a major impact on performance.’

        Even if the new feathered tip style winglet brings a marginal benefit, it looks “cooler”, you might retrofit it to the 737NG’s and it is not from Aviation Partners, thus giving the whole profit to BCA.

      • Couldn’t agree more with CRORpower, I think the biggest reason for the new device is to distinguish the Max from neo. Airbus looked at the feathered tip for both A380 as well as the neo and did not find what Boeing is claiming. We’ll see how the OEM’s claims stack up when both aircraft are in service, particularly the engine performance would be of big interest.

      • IMHO the winglet bashing article spree and 4 weeks later
        the advent of the new B wingtip device seem to be much closer linked 😉

  10. If the expectations were that Boeing would catch up on the Airbus NEO this obviously did not happen. The sales weren’t as large and Airbus raised the bar.

    In Europe BA, AF/KLM, Easyjet, Ryanair, SAS didn’t commit to either the NEO or the MAX. Also in Asia there are upcoming orders (china, India, Malaysia) IMO Airbus played a game. First they told everyone they were carefull on expanding capacity and then announced Alabama.

    Aspire is IMO a little one sided, Only Boeing comparison slides are shown..

    • O’Leary(Ryanair) is interested in the C919 which can be seen as a tactical move towards BCA and Airbus. Both are not willing to give O’Leary the discount he would like to have. I am sure that O’Leary would like to place a 200 A/C order with one of the major OEM’s. In the frame of already reduced delivery positions at Airbus, there will be the MAX or in fact really the C919. In any case, good for GE! It is to be seen if Boeing “has to deal” with O’Leary to sell the MAX or if they can avoid it, because there is better business. It seems that Airbus can afford to ignore O’Leary and fill the slots with more lucrative customers.

      • MOL leans toward anything that gets his mug in the papers. His “interest” in the C919 does that. The Chinese won’t have an airplane for him until at least 2020 or later. If the ARJ21 is any indication… MUCH later.

        Airbus has said publicly they have no interest in doing business with MOL. Probably because MOL jerked them around so badly the last go around. Leahy has washed his hands of him.

      • I find MOL’s interest in C919 intriguing. However, just like you I would not think that he is seriously considering buying that aircraft as there are too many risks surrounding that program, given COMAC’s performance.

  11. For Top Boom !

    1/ I was just thinking a GTF engine, would have been a marvel for the B757 !
    Evidently, the current model is 33 000 lbs For Irkuk and Airbus, probably able to deliver 35 000 lbs some day !
    2/ Thank for the wings info, the A321 Wing is slightly different from the A320, regarding the slat’s !
    And the A321NEO wing will get all new slat’s, it’s the only info available !
    I think the A321NEO Wing is in the very limit they can support, so …
    Airbus may be thinking to add some Square Meters … to be announced later, or enter in a serious weight rip-out for the plane … or a combination of both !
    Let see what happens … Airbus has to do something !

    A319-A320 NEO have to fly ASAP, with minimum burden, for Airbus…. and may be some months ahead if the PW 1100G get it’s certification quickly enough !
    The A321, may fly more than one year later, it’s for me an indicator, IMO, they plan to solve more problems !

    • Airlines like Ryanair, Easyjet and Jetblue want a 200 seater single class. Airbus’ issue is that the A320 is relatively short and A321 relatively large. For airlines wanting to grow from the A320 to the A321 it is a big step (7 rows). The 738 and 739 both fall inbetween the 320 and 321. Airbus could make a move, satisfying the requirement with a A320 stretch, but is keeping mum on the topic. Same for larger/ longer ranged A321, airlines like US ask for it.

      No initiatives though.. Airbus doesn’t have to and is occupied with the A350s..

      • Airbus didn’t have to put on winglets, but eventually the gain was too great to ignore. I wouldn’t be surprised to see your A320NEOplus in the air around 2018. The techtonic pressures of economics will bring it to life.

      • keesje, Airbus has a lot on its plate right now and for the next several years. As you know, they are still working out production problems for the A-380, plus they still have more work to do on the rib feet problems for the A-380. Next is the various models of the A-350, the -900 is approaching 2 years late, the -800 and -1000 are years behind that. Airbus has completely stopped talking about the A-359R and A-359F models. The NEO program for the A-32X family seems to be taking a long time, considering it is suppose to be only a minimual engineering change. The related sharklet program just entered flight testing. They want to do something with the A-330, but really haven’t said much other than a gross weight increase and possibly more range. The A-330F program isn’t doing so well, having lost sales to both the B-767F and the B-777F. Then we get to the continuing saga of the half decade + delayed A-400M program, with first deliveries (French Air Force) now pushed back until at least next year. No one has said anything in the past year and a half about the A-330MRTT (KC-30, KC-45) program, since it lost out to Boeing’s B-767-2C based KC-46.

        They also want to get their product production rates up on all product lines, including the new Mobile Alabama plant.

        I see no where that they can take on three new programs in the A-32X family, your A-320.5, the A-322, and the extended range versions of the A-321.

        By advocating the A-320.5, A-322, and A-321XR, you seem to be saying they need to compete more directly with the B-737-800W/-8MAX and the B-757-200/-300. Are you saying Airbus needs to catch up with Boeing?

        • TCook :
          KC, don’t forget the A380-900 superjumbot.

          Oops, your right, I forgot about the A-389 and the A-388F models. Thanks, TCook

  12. Do a 40K GTF, put the 767-200 MLG on the A321, put raked wingtips on the current A321 wing. Trade some cargo space for a belly tank.

  13. keesje :
    Airlines like Ryanair, Easyjet and Jetblue want a 200 seater single class. Airbus’ issue is that the A320 is relatively short and A321 relatively large. For airlines wanting to grow from the A320 to the A321 it is a big step (7 rows). The 738 and 739 both fall inbetween the 320 and 321. Airbus could make a move, satisfying the requirement with a A320 stretch, but is keeping mum on the topic. Same for larger/ longer ranged A321, airlines like US ask for it.
    No initiatives though.. Airbus doesn’t have to and is occupied with the A350s..

    Just a common dream Keesje … Just to fill the gap, 3-4 row more to the A320 !
    And a new wing, may be …
    Since the A318 has been eliminated, Airbus may open a new window !
    May be the need of a launch customer for 200 … one day in the hands of JL !
    I’m thinking to Easy Jet, but their new directors are very conservative …
    Sure, Airbus has to think very loudly about this subject …
    But … I don’t see a chance before EIS 2018 …

  14. KCT, I understand your frustrations, but everything will be alright.

    • Yes, it will all work out in the next several years, for both Airbus and Boeing.

  15. Some of the comments here would seem to indicate that EADS & specifically its Airbus arm is on the road to disaster this is despite it becoming the prime numerical manufacturer of commercial Jets, Turboprops & Rotary wing.

    Hard graft, but certainly rewarding.

  16. Ryanair want the 737-800 but with the 900ER exit arrangement, so they can fit exactly 199 passengers. It will be a squash but they can also rearrange the lavatories. When Boeing do,this, Ryanair will order the plane – NG version at keen prices. Boeing will be reasonably happy because they want to fill the NG backlog.

  17. On the issue of pricing, I’ve always thought it was strange that Airbus’s discount for AA is being compared with Boeing’s discounts for the MAX. Surely you’d think that to crack a rival’s customer, you’d need bigger discounts than to keep a customer you already have? Imo, that’d make A’s discount a lot more understandable than B’s discount to SW for example who was probably never going to order Airbus to begin with. Now if BOeing were to deeply discount to snag a loyal Airbus customer, then it’d be comparable.

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