The ILA Berlin Air Show begins tomorrow. The Air Show is a poor cousin to the Farnborough Air Show (July this year) and the Paris Air Show (in odd-numbered years). We went to this show in 2006 and were more excited about returning to Berlin for the first time since before the Berlin Wall came down than we were about going to the event itself.
Boeing doesn’t place much stock in the show since it is viewed as an Airbus star vehicle. Best we can tell from the ILA website, Boeing isn’t even an exhibitor.
Airbus tries to have some major announcements for the show, although Farnborough and Paris–being the bigger draws and having greater international prestige–are clearly the favored forum.
What might Airbus announce at the Berlin show, other than a few orders? The aviation world is waiting and watching for what Airbus will do about the A330neo and, with it, the future of the A350-800. Airbus is sending the A350-900 to the Air Show for the first time–will this be the place Airbus puts the nail in the coffin of the A35-800? We have our doubts about that.
Could Airbus launch the A330neo at the ILA? We received an email over the weekend that an announcement could be forthcoming at this show, but the source is from outside Airbus (though information from this source is usually reliable). Expectations for the A330neo have centered on Farnborough, however. Our Market Intelligence tells us few potential customers have actually seen proposals from Airbus on the A330neo as yet, so we think it might be a bit premature to have a launch of the program. Information is also that Airbus has been looking at the “second half” of 2014 to make a decision (at least publicly). May isn’t in the second half–but July is.
Other than this suspense, if you can call it that, we don’t expect much out of ILA this week.