Next new, clean sheet airplane around 2030, says Airbus

Airbus currently is planning for the next new, clean sheet airplane around 2030 and now are focusing on incremental improvements to the existing product lines, officials said at the Innovations Days annual media briefing last week in Toulouse.

Fabrice Bregier, CEO of the Airbus commercial aircraft unit, said that “innovation is on a case3-by-case basis,” with a successor to the A320 family requiring an engine “with great benefit.” He did not define this, but previously Airbus indicated a successor needs a combined 30% airframe/engine improvement to make an entirely new airplane design worthwhile.

Bregier did say, “I don’t want to invest $10bn and have a poor result. Incremental improvements have to be constant. I have pushed my engineers and work has started to pay off with shorter-term incremental innovations.

“We need to look ahead for break-through technologies 10-15 years in the future.” The A320neo, now in assembly, is a straight-forward re-engining of the legacy A320 family that first entered service in 1988 and which has undergone Product Improvement Packages since. Airbus has implemented PIPs to the A330 family, dramatically increasing its range since introduction in 1994 and officials are currently considering a re-engining program. The A380, which entered service in 2007, is also being considered for a new engine upgrade. The prospect of further stretching the A350-900 beyond the A350-1000 is also being studied, with and without a new engine. System upgrades are being considered for the A320neo, according to a recent Aviation Week report.

Bregier also said that “given more time and investment, the A350-800 will become a very good aircraft.” The -800 currently has only 34 orders after most were upgraded to the larger -900 and -1000, and some were canceled outright. “We have to revisit the trade-offs and take off some weight.”

Although Bregier says he has yet to be convinced of the business case for the A330neo, he believes that the lighter, short-range A330 provides more value than the Boeing 787-8 and on some routes its larger sibling, the A350-900. “If you don’t need the range, you are carrying around extra weight,” he says of the -900. As for the 787-8, Bregier believes the airplane is too small for its capital cost.

Furthermore, given its history of program difficulties, “Why would an airline buy an airplane that has not proved anything except flaws in operation? The answer is, I’d be deranged.”

Bregier is nothing if not direct.




56 Comments on “Next new, clean sheet airplane around 2030, says Airbus

  1. Between Boeing and Airbus, Commercial aviation looks to be dead boring for the next decade. Instead of new designs, all we will see are charts on fuel consumption and seat/mile numbers.

    • I don’t think it’s going to be boring at all. There’s a lot to love about the derivatives from here to 2030’s. And anyway their CEOs have to make a good business case of the airplanes they build, not just satisfy the avgeeks.

  2. I am not convinced that Airbus will not have a new clean sheet airplane for another 16 years. We have gotten one or more new airliner designs from airplane OEMs every decade since the days of the B-707, DC-8, and Comet-1 back in the 1950s.
    1950s – Comet, B-707, DC-8, Caravelle
    1960s – B-727, B-737, DC-9
    1970s, – B-747, L-1011, DC-10, A-300
    1980s – B-757, B-767, A-310, A-320, MD-80
    1990s – A-340, A-330, MD-11, B-777
    2000s – A-380
    2010s – B-787, A-350

    Mr. Bregier may be talking only Airbus’s position as of today. But, I have a feeling Airbus will respond to customer’s demand for a new airliner. Boeing may very well bring out the long proposed NSA/B-757 replacement in the 2020s.

    • kc135topboom,

      That’s a good list. Thanks for publishing.

      As an adjustment, I’d like to modify the list to show only the true cleansheets. This means that the DC-9 will include the later MD-80, the A300 will include the A310, the DC-10 will include the MD-11 and the A330 and A340 will be combined so that the list now looks like this:

      1950s (4) – Comet, B-707, DC-8, Caravelle
      1960s (3) – B-727, B-737, DC-9
      1970s, (4) – B-747, L-1011, DC-10, A-300
      1980s (3) – B-757, B-767, A-320
      1990s (2) – A-330/340, B-777
      2000s (1) – A-380
      2010s (2) – B-787, A-350

      Also, I see your point about 16 years being too long for another aircraft to be introduced. I figure 16 years is a long time and during that time a “Hole” will appear in the market that one, or both, of the manufacturers will feel compelled to fill.


      • How cleansheet were the 727 and 737 really ?
        The 777 could be seen as a 767 nose joined to a blown up 757 fuselage and wings
        and some FBW stuff thrown in ;-?
        The A330/A340 took a lot of detailing from the A300/A310 while joining up with the A320 FBW to create a WB FBW craft. Earlier the A310 ( and afair also the A300-600) introduced partial FBW ( on level with what the 748 got just recently ).

        In extremis we could reduce the “true Cleansheet designs”
        for Airbus : A300, A320, A380 and A350
        for Boeing : Dash80, 747, 757/767, 787

        • Using your logic, Uwe, then Airbus didn’t produce a new clean sheet airplane between the A-300 and A-320, then didn’t produce another one until the A-350 showed up. Because the A-340/-330 were just longer A-300s with newer wings and engines.
          No, the B-727, B-737, A-310, and A-330/-340 were all clean sheet airplanes. A common fuselage, shorter or longer does not make it a derivative.

        • Uwe, your 777 description is not correct. It was one of the cleanest Boeing sheets of all time.

          Perhaps one way to define a “clean sheet” on this side of the Atlantic is if there is a new FAA Type Certificate Data Sheet [TCDS].

          A notable exception is the grand-daddy of them all, the Dash-80. It was a one-off cleanest-sheet, bet-the-company, uncertified experimental prototype, so it never had a TCDS

          On the Boeing side, the 707-720 series had several TCDS’s. The 707-100&200, the 707-300&400. and the 720 each had their own. But that was a very long time ago. Since then, all the 727’s have their own. All the 737’s, -100 thru -900ER are all on one TCDS. Similarly, all the 747’s, 757’s 767’s, 777’s and 787’s are in their own TCDS.

          On the heritage Douglas side, there is one TCDS for all the DC-8’s. One TCDS includes all DC-9 derivatives, from the DC-9-11 through the Boeing 717 [formerly the MD-95] All the DC-10’s plus the MD-11 are in one TCDS

          As for Airbus, the A300’s and A310’s are in one TCDS. The single-aisle A318 thru A321 are in another. However, the A330’s and A340’s are in separate TCDS’s – perhaps because of the different certification requirements for two vs four engines, despite all the other similarities.

          And let us not forget Concorde, the 1970’s most magnificent triumph of speed and technology over economics.

          Plus those listed by others.

        • ” Because the A-340/-330 were just longer A-300s with newer wings and engines…A common fuselage, shorter or longer does not make it a derivative.”

          The 747-8 is not a derivative? And the 737NG?

      • I see your point about 16 years being too long for another aircraft to be introduced.

        It’s hard to believe that 2030 in only 16 years away!

    • What do you expect? Even the A330 aerodynamics are close to perfect for current aircraft design. A new aircraft design would be required if an engine won’t fit under a current design but that would not be a giant leap. For open rotor a new design would be required but against an RR Ultra a completely new design would not be compatible.

      A “B-757 replacement”? Who cares? The new A321 is bigger than the 757-200. The remaining 757 segment is far to small for a new aircraft. More range or size and you will enter the area of the A330.

      The enhancements will be different then today. Electric tail rotor for better laminar flow. Electric driven propellers with generators? No need for a gear box… Think different;-)

      • the A-321-200 is 146′ long, the cabin length is 111′. The B-757-200 is 155′ long and a cabin length of 118′.
        More range and size and you get to the B-767-300ER, then B-787-8, before you get to the A-330 length.
        “The enhancements will be different then today. Electric tail rotor for better laminar flow. Electric driven propellers with generators? No need for a gear box… Think different;-)”
        True, but the more “thingies” that stick out into the air stream, the more drag you have to contend with.
        “Even the A330 aerodynamics are close to perfect for current aircraft design.”
        Then why the call for blended winglets, oops I mean sharklets? BTW, no airplane design has perfect, or near perfect aerodynamics.

        • I think the 763 is not in production any more so no point offering that as an alternative. A321 neo is close to the 752, but not quite as long. But with modern seating it can have the same pax capacity as the 752s of yore.

          Anyway, I agree with mhalbaub that the unserved 757 replacement market is so small that it makes little sense to build a bespoke airframe for it. Between the 739/A321 and the A330 there is precious little revenue to be gained by investing billions in a new plane.

        • For ‘cabin length’, only ‘useable cabin length’ has significance, ie the measured length from the aftmost sill of fwd door through the foremost sill of aft door, which in A321 corresponds to 56 fuselage ‘frames’, ie 21″ x 56 = 1,176″ = 98′. A guesstimate for the 752 of same is 1280″ or 104″ more, which gives three more seat-rows. Cross-aisle passageways and bulkhead space are lost to other uses and cannot serve to claim seat capacity … For A321 we observe that 1,176″ = 28″ x 42 rows, and 42 x 6 = 252 seats, except you need the Emergency Exits, so you get maximum 240 pax.

      • I find that interesting notion. No winglets and Boeing has gone onto crank wing that is even better than Winglets (takes and all new wing)

        I believe that is called Airbus spin, “the wing is so perfect that it needs no improvement”. I don’t buy that.

        All new design and composite would be lighter and not only more efficient, also allows more weight in revenue rather than structure (or longer range).

        Its called framing the debate to your terms. Not that they all don’t try it but we don’t have to buy it.

        • “Framing the debate”
          I’d see more debatable elements in the way you presented your views than in what you commented on.
          Ticking off curlicues on your preferred specimen and interpreting lack or difference on products of the competition as obvious signs of inferiority is the most popular but wrong technique.
          At the moment the finely optimised mature A330 airframe appears to have not been overtaken by the still unoptimised 787 airframe. Due to their different maturities the B frame should show faster improvements than the A frame. Note “it should” this may not be a given.

        • “At the moment the finely optimised mature A330 airframe appears to have not been overtaken by the still unoptimised 787 airframe.”

          Wow! It’s hard to take this unsubstantiated statement seriously. If the A330 is so finely optimized, then why the need for sharklets, as KC and TW have already pointed out?

          • “Wow! It’s hard to take this unsubstantiated statement seriously.”

            You should not taint your observations by wishful thinking, Mike.

            Tech Improvements can still be added to any airframe. ( and why then, to follow your argument, does the 787 have elaborate wingtip devices to start with. they appear to be “necessary” ).
            The difference is in how effective their application will be.
            A330 and A320 currently show no limiting from mergine them in while forex the 737 is far out onto the slope of diminishing returns.

          • Almost every long range airplane is equipped with wingtip devises of some type. It is not just the B-787. Have you looked at the A-350 lately? It has wingtip devises, too. The A-330 has always had winglets, but today, that style is outdated, which is why some would like to see sharklets put on it. The real unasked question is, on the A-330, how much more efficient will sharklets be over the current winglet design? 2%? 5%?. Also, the sharklet looks a lot like the AP blended winglet built as original equipment, or retro fitted to B-737NG, B-737-500, B-757, and B-767.

            As time goes on, wingtip devices will become even more advanced and more efficient than today. It is in the best interest of both major airframe OEMs to continue these, and other, advances.

            “A330 and A320 currently show no limiting from mergine them in while forex the 737 is far out onto the slope of diminishing returns.”

            Today’s B-737NG is not the same airplane as the 1960s model B-737s. It is bigger, lighter, more efficient, and has much more range than the original B-737-100/-200. It will be even better with tomorrow’s B-737MAX. The B-737 has been through four major design changes, the ORIGNAL, CLASSIC, NG, and MAX, and is still going strong. The A-320 is just now going into its second major design change, the NEO, although the A-320, like the B-737 has had several minor tweaks since its original EIS.

            The B-737 has shown any airplane design can have an enduring and extended life as long as it has major updates during its overall life. With about 12,000 B-737s sold it not only is the best selling airliner of all time, but updates keep it on the leading edge of airliner technology and efficiency, which is what the airlines want. So, in reality, no airliner has any limit to its legacy, with periodic updates, it can be produced forever, in theory.

        • “You should not taint your observations by wishful thinking, Mike.”

          No wishful thinking on my part, Uwe. Claiming that the A330 is finely optimized while the 787 is unoptimized is wishful thinking and foolish. This is just typical Boeing bashing based on dislike rather than on any real world data or technical details.

          All commercial aircraft are optimized within a given set of constraints, like materials limitations, engine performance, and desired mission profile, just to name a few. My guess is the optimum is typically some kind of minimized cost, such as operating or total life cycle cost. When changes are made to certain parts of the aircraft, other parts of the aircraft need to change as well in order for the system to remain “finely” optimized. However, just changing a few parts my get you close enough to the optimum, as in the case of stretched or updated versions.

    • There’s considerable mileage in Airbus & perhaps Boeing developing some of their current portfolio. Admittedly the sixteen years quoted by Airbus seems excessive but with the emphasis toward engine technology any new airframe planned by the current two prime manufacturers would have to be a considerably more ground breaking design than 787 & 350

      The 737 even in its proposed Max format struggles in face of a more flexible A320 Consequently any new single aisle design from Boeing has to be truly radical & as such Boeing must move first, which again will likely mean Airbus sit back watch, learn & take the initiative..

      With an involvement in the following ground breaking foreign programs, I tried resisting KC’s omissions, my pride dictated otherwise.


      I won’t go on…

      • With an involvement in the following ground breaking foreign programs, I tried resisting KC’s omissions, my pride dictated otherwise.


        Thanks Phil. I also forgot about the little Fokkers, too 😉

        • And E-Jets and Cseries (plus regionals if you want to count them).

    • kc135topboom,
      I totally agree with you in this one!

      When they hint a new design is on the way, they will stall sales on the existing model, and further accelerate the A/B race.
      They have no interest to do so at the moment – their hands are full at the moment.

  3. The Bombardier CSeries is a mainliner, not a RJ, with about the same capacity as early versions of the B 737. It should count as a new clean sheet design for the current decade.

  4. I would not put Bregier as direct as plane silly or catty. Its not if its going to be a good airplane its when and currently the issues have dropped off the radar (Boeing management is a whole different ball game and legitimate target for scorn). I notice he did not say anything about Ver 4 or so of the A330 response to the 787s.

    Equally disingenuous is the A350-800 comments as they have been trying to kill it for some time with all sorts of incentives to move the the 900 even if its bigger than the original orders needed (says something about right size aircraft as well). The 800 may come but its going to be a long wait and a much different aircraft if and when it does.

    You have to ask what wonder engine is there by 2030? The only big gain is GTF and second generation would be ready a lot sooner.

    Ergo, Airbus may not want to but when Boeing pulls the trigger on the 737RS then it’s get going ready or not. Boeing advantage (and hopefully McNenbarny is long gone) to pull the trigger sooner than Airbus is ready. I think they have the general idea laid out, it’s a matter of some technology maturity and that second generation GTF.

  5. As for the 787-8, Bregier believes the airplane is too small for its capital cost.

    Right! It’s too small! That’s why Boeing’s has orders for 486 of them, compared to the “right-sized” A350-8, which has 34 orders.

    • Boeing aren’t selling many 787-8’s these days. They are generally believed to have underpriced their earlier sales. The 787-9, which is the same size as the A350-8, is selling well on the other hand.

      I think Mr Brégier is correct about size. The problem with the A350-800 is that it isn’t as good a plane as the 787-9. It carries an engine that is optimized at a thrust level that is one quarter bigger than it needs be. It carries a wing that is optimized for a much larger model flying a much longer range.

      “Taking off some weight” from the A350-800 won’t work. A viable 787-9 competitor requires its own more efficient, lower thrust engine, and not a hand-me-down from the A350-900. It probably also requires a new wing.

      Airbus gives the impression of wanting to compete with the 787. They will need to do something.

      • FF – I agree with you w.r.t. the -800. That jet has to have dedicated engines, possibly redesigned wings with less fuel but the same range. It also has to stand on it’s merits, rather than offered with discounts. Airbus needs to go back to their customers and find out what they need to do to the -800 to make it sweet.

        My views on v1.0 planes. those airline that put up their hands to be launch customers of a jet or those that buy the initial 1 – 100 jets must mad. Like software, the v2.0 versions of jets are sweeter, less buggy and have learnt from the mad airlines that suffer the earlier models. If I were a CEO of an airline, I would stock up on new A320 CEO’s A330 CEO’s or B777-300s.

    • Check how many orders the 787-8 has scored since the -9 EIS started getting closer and that should tell you where Bregier is coming from. Don’t be so quick to post without thinking, eh?

      • So Boeing was supposed to just ignore the market for those 486 787-8’s, eh?
        The 787-9 will be the bigger seller, but there is still a market for the 787-8. Don’t be so quick to post without thinking.

        • Obviously not, but the fact is since the bigger plane has started getting closer, orders for the -8 has dried up, which does show there’s a preference for the larger plane, which fits in with Breiger’s statement. i know it’s painful to read anything that’s not praise for Boeing, but it wasn’t a particularly harsh slight. Take heart.

          • I guess the 486 B-787-8 orders means there is no room for the A-330NEO, since, as you say, the airlines want a bigger airplane, like the B-787-9? Boeing has sold at least 39 B-787-8s since Feb. 2012

    • The Que is full right now. Hard to get slots. Yes you can get a few, but if you are trying to build enough to work your routes not so easy.

      -9s are all taken for some time (and Boeing is still not up to 10 a month delivered).

      So, like the A320, you sell the slots out to 2020 something and then the only alternative is the other guy if he has a plane and slots.

      The -10 had a big uptake in interest because it filled holes but they are also out as its not flying yet let alone produced.

      It explains why A330s are still selling (not a good though).

      The 787-8 fills the need for some though as time goes by its going to be much lower produced, -9 will hit the heart of it and the -10 will account for its share. In almost all case the -300 has sold better than the -200 (though now its escalated and its the -9 and 900 and -10 and 1000 so we have “mature aircraft” which is all silly but Airbus started it and we are stuck with it.

      Pretty much so what. Its the program not the individual variants thats relevant.

  6. No one moves if he doesn’t have to. I think both braced for the effect of Russian and Chinese competitors, as well as BBD and Embraer entering the market. But what happened:
    – C-Series will eventually bite a small piece out of the large cake, and fortunately the less profitable piece
    – Embraer shies away from larger aircraft, while its activity regarding the KC-390 (with its suspiciously A320-like wing) need to be taken serious
    – MC-21 (Russia) still far from first flight, EIS before 2017 unlikely, no attractive competitor before 2020
    – C919: potentially the strongest competitor due to deep pockets of the Chinese and large (and state-controlled) home market. Technical difficulties will delay its introduction (= certified aircraft in volume production) to 2018 at best.

    So, any move now by A or B would be stupid. It would waste the precious powder before the battle actually commenced. Any statement regarding the future by the CEO reflects current thinking, and how he intends the world to think about Airbus. In two or three years from now (with NEO fully running, A350 out of the woods and A380 not being a cash-sucker), Airbus has the firepower for a new program if required.

    But they don’t have to, single aisle market leader and good enough at the widebodies (while Boeing maintains a stronger position here).

    Things might move fast later this decade: C919 becoming operational and Embraer launching an all-new single aisle optimized for 1500nm @ 200Pax.

    • All accurate though you should add in that the C919 is a dated technology with only engine and system (A320NE)) added and not even an up to date A320 copy. They also severely lack integration and support skills. not to mention program management. Money only ensures something will come out, not that it is any good. You have to start at the bottom, master and acquire the skills to larger and larger and then when you have the experience go for a breakout move like Airbus did (and they struggled early on)

      Its not a competitor in any measure of the meaning. As long as Boeing and Airbus keep an eye on it, they can jump over anything anyone else can put out. And they are driving each other as well as keeping an eye out so thats simply not going to happen.

      Unfortunately for the Chinese, its not like Laptops where you can out produce and rapid release of new fast and up the ante regularly . Its a 30 year commitment and if you are not state of the art when you release you are sunk. Nothing they have is state of the art, its all copies of the last generation.

      State support can also mean massive bureaucracy issues as well as slow.

      • “Money only ensures something will come out, not that it is any good. ”

        Against Airbus this was regularly denied alleging that Airbus bested Boeing
        with an inferior but subsidized product 😉
        In relation to China the question imho is : will they leverage money to _learn_ something, gain tangible experience ?
        Probably YES. ( Did Boeing learn anything productive from getting tax gifts ;-?

  7. I think Boeing most likely will have to pull the trigger on an NSA. The A320 has further room for enhancements / derivatives. Airbus is already developing them.looking at the MAX order book, it is far less impressive then the numbers would suggest.

    The A321 is shooting new holes in Boeings 737 customer base. Boeing can talk up the MAX, BPR, FBW and LD3 are there. If Airbus launches the standard comfort 200 seater airlines are asking for, Boeing must launch.

    • I don’t think Airbus needs to launch a new A320 derivative. A321’s max(haha) capacity is being bumped to 240pax with new arrangements so I’d guess you can sit 200 people quite comfortably.

    • Thousands of A320 will need to be replaced in a decade. Airlines can select the A320 without growth or the much longer (+7m) heavier and more expensive A321.
      The 737-8 and 737-9 fall inbetween the A320 and A321 capacity wise.

      Airbus is trying to sail around the issue by boosting A320 capacity (smart galleys etc)

      Asked in Paris if he had looked into buying the Airbus A320 NEO, a MAX competitor, O’Leary said Ryanair gave it “serious consideration.” But the decision came down to the seat count: The Airbus holds nine fewer passengers than the Boeing, although its performance numbers are similar. The extra seats are what matters. “You work out that maths…it would be a million bucks a year,” he said.

      AF, Jetblue and Easyjet made/make similar noises. They want to grow their A320 fleets and 199 seats are allowed with 4 crew members.

      • IMJ, Airbus will launch an A320neo+, 6-7 frame stretch of the A320neo some time after 2017,but only after having achieved a successful A32Xceo to A32Xneo transition. I’d reckon they would call it the A322neo (i.e an A322 would be smaller than the A321neo; or similar to how the 737-500 was shorter than the 737-400).

        • That would be a seriously un-optimized wing. Won’t happen unless you re-wing and if Airbus is sinking that much money into it, they might as well re-skin it a la A350 and its a whole new airplane.

        • It looks like you misunderstood my post.

          An A320neo+ would be a 6-7 frame stretch of the A320neo and not a stretch of the A321, which BTW was stretched by 13 frames over that of the A320. Hence, A319neo < A320neo < A322neo < A321neo. If required, an A322neo could be outfitted with the same trailing edge as that of the A321neo (i.e. double-slotted flap system).

  8. If the C-Series 300 is successful, would they and if Bombardier did, how much would a simple stretch cost so the plane could hold 150-160 passengers in a two-class configuration?

    • Long narrow-bodies have serious trade-offs when it comes to turn-around times. Your more revenue per flight is killed by more time loading/unloading on the ground which a narrow-body does multiple times per day.

  9. Ummm, naaa.

    Both Airbus and Boeing will have clean sheet designs of medium range (single-aisle replacement) aircraft by 2025; which will pave the way for future airliner platforms incorporating possibly a ‘double-bubble’ (twin aisle) joined-wing configuration with open rotors, laminar flow control and green (low emissions, low noise) technologies.

  10. This statement doesn’t rule out Airbus putting a clean sheet wing on an existing model and a stretch. Like a new 42m CFRP wing on the A321 and A322.

    • It would produce the aircraft with lowest CASM on 2000-4000nm routes with 200-240 PAX. So let’s observe.

  11. Only if they are forced to. Key is as little as possible to stay even (or likely a bit ahead with the GTF).

    They may not even want to get too good as that would force Boeing to pull the trigger and then they would have to and they are not ready for an RS.

    Boeing advantage is Airbus was too successful with the NEO and slots are sold out until 2020 something. If you want an aircraft thats the latest then a 737NEO int he hand is worth two A320NEO on the please call list.

    And Airbus gets more cash per each A320 than Boeing gets for a 737Max simply because Boeing had to make a lot more changes to even stay close.

  12. I think Boeing will be in a deep doo-doo with not having the GTF. I predict GTF will be a surprise like GE115 was and the narrow body market will start to look like A346 vs. 773ER only with roles reversed. This will force Boeing to go clean sheet.

  13. Confusing signals from Airbus. We don’t think there is a business case for the A330 NEO but we aren’t doing another clean sheet aircraft until 2030.

    That seems to be quite a large segment they would be ceding to Boeing.

  14. What we are witnessing is a structural change in the controls of the industry, from the hands of the OEMs into the hands of the airlines holders of all the slot rights. A and B have oversold themselves and have turned into mere retail industry executioners, fully absorbed with sorting all the nuts, bolts, CFRP and whatever other hardware detail compose a fully assembled aircraft, in follow-up to six full years’ worth of industrial throughput sold forward, both OEMs totally pervaded by the magnitude of the gigantic task, to the extent that their souls as ‘airframers’ transcend into hibernation, their creative functions inhibited, prostrate, obsolete … dormant like two Sleeping Beauties awaiting the next charming Prince’s wake-up kiss, around 2030 ?

  15. Scott,

    I will have to disagree with you on your comment “Bregier is nothing if not direct”.

    In my opinion, anyone who says ““given more time and investment, the A350-800 will become a very good aircraft” is either: (a) horribly misinformed or (b) anything but direct.

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