Odds and Ends: Airbus to lower A330 rate; Mitsubishi MRJ rollout Saturday; Delta retiring 747s; Enders slams German government; MC-21

MC-21 will claim 10% of world market: So Irkut claims. Here’s a 10 minute video.


Update, 7am PDT Oct. 17: Airbus announced it will lower production rates on the A330ceo from 10 to nine a month in 4Q2015. We believe this is a first-step. The backlog drops sharply in 2016. The first A330neo isn’t planned for delivery until December 2017 and we believe rates will come down once more in advance. At the Farnborough Air Show, John Leahy, COO Customers, said he believes rates for the neo will settle in around 7-8 a month/ we think ceo rates will come down to reflect this.

Mitsubishi rolls out MRJ Saturday: You can watch it live, at 2pm Japan time.

The MRJ 90 is Japan’s first home-grown commercial airliner since the YS-11 turbo-prop, which entered service in 1961. As we noted Wednesday, the MRJ has collected a good number of orders, but the customer base in small.

The MRJ is 3 1/2 years late.

Aviation Week has this feature.

Here is a link to a brochure.

Delta retiring 747s: Delta Air Lines said during its earnings call Thursday that it will retire its Boeing 747-400s in 2017. These airplanes were acquired in the merger of Northwest Airlines, which was the launch customer of the 747-400. Delta is replacing the 747s with twin-aisle, medium-sized airplanes.

Enders slams German government: Tom Enders, CEO of Airbus Group, slammed the German government over its position on defense exports.

Enders, a German, has long been critical of German government policies, and has been moving operations into France as a result.

We find Enders’ candor to be refreshingly frank. Most CEOs tend to hedge their opinions.



5 Comments on “Odds and Ends: Airbus to lower A330 rate; Mitsubishi MRJ rollout Saturday; Delta retiring 747s; Enders slams German government; MC-21

  1. There is probably a bit more to the image campaign against weapons sales in Germany than just a case of morals ( as it is presented in public ). Keep in mind that Turkish people in Germany have a rather strong kurd background.
    Help for Kurds fighting the “mushroomed from nowhere” IS in general appears to be rather listless. Turks just watch, the US throws a couple of bombs without much effect.
    Add that surprising find of a WMD stash ( ignoring the fact that IS lookalikes in Syria used poison gas long before they overran that depot.)
    “Morals” was the best lever to fit in with “Deutsche Befindlichkeiten”.
    But the campaign targets “not helping Kurds” for whatever nefarious reason.
    Thus Enders could well speak against the reasoning behind that.

  2. Have to disagree with Uwe there – firstly, I think this whole line of “Keep in mind that Turkish people in Germany have a rather strong kurd background.” misses the point completely when it comes to German weapons exports in general. Even when it comes to the whole sorry IS affair I don’t think it’s a factor.

    As for Enders… the Economic Times of India references an interview in the Handelsblatt that isn’t actually online, and I don’t have Thursday’s printed version available.
    Anyway, Enders seems in that interview to follow on from his “10 Theses”, a kind of speech that Enders delivered on October 14th at a Handelsblatt-sponsored event.
    Here’s the full text of that speech – note it’s in German:

    It’s worth noting that his tone in that is much more diplomatic and much less one-sided than the Economic Times article suggests. The one point that is like a thread through all of his ten points is that he believes that the European military as well as European defence programmes should be much better aligned with each other and less fragmented.
    His other main point is that both the industry and governments have been absolutely shocking in the past at developing and managing new projects (doesn’t take much imagination to see what project in particular he’s got in mind there) and that in the future, the approach should be less confrontational and more co-operative.
    All of which I find it easy enough to agree on, to be honest.

    Anyway – I actually disagree with Enders regarding Germany’s export policy, although Enders’ Bundeswehr background means that I’m not exactly surprised by his criticism of the more restrained German policy on defence exports. He isn’t called “Major Tom” for nothing.
    Note the euphemism in the term “defence exports” as well. As if those exports could not also be used in an offensive attack.

    Generally, with weapons exports I do think there is a bit more to be considered than just “Will it create jobs here?”. Morally as well as geopolitically, which is evident by the fact that IS are now in possession of an arsenal of weapons originally delivered by the US to its various – at the time – friends in the region. Some German weapons in there as well, of course, among a few others. So it’s a bit ironic at least some of IS’s potency comes from getting their hands on weapons that were provided to supposedly stabilise the region, when they’re now actually doing the opposite, and the same countries that provided those weapons now have to fight them. Then there’s also human rights issues to be considered, such as providing short-range attack weapons to Saudi Arabia, who have no problems with sending soldiers over to Bahrain who end up shooting Bahraini protesters. Once you start digging you’ll find plenty of other examples.

    Sure, military export regulations/policy will never be perfect, and there’ll be compromises, and bad ones at that, plus there will often be somebody else providing country X with type of weapons that you won’t sell to them.
    But that doesn’t mean you should throw even the attempt to be moral/sensible/sensitive about military exports completely overboard because you’re content counting dollars/euros and nothing else matters. That approach would indeed amount to a declaration of moral bankruptcy of “the West”. What grounds do you have for criticising government X for providing regime Y with weapons if you’re doing exactly the same thing, except to a different regime?

  3. The MC-21 cabin is spacious. Boeing needs to throw down the gauntlet and build a 13′-7″ wide interior diameter cabin. 18″ seats at 2-2-2, double aisle for the 180 to 270 seat sector. 1-2-1 premium business seating.

  4. There is a significant difference between the A330 and 777 production gaps.

    If Airbus has 250 A330s on order early 2015, they can deliver 83 per year/ 6.9 per month until the NEO arrives. (EIS early 2018, no further orders)

    If Boeing has 280 B777s on order early 2015, they can deliver 56 per year / 4.7 per month until the X arrives. (EIS early 2020, no further orders)

    Also the risks seem different. Airbus did a new engine on the A320NEO and new platform certification on the A350. Boeing did a new engine/wing on the 747-8 and new platform certification on the 787.

    If recent track record mains anything, the A330 NEO and 777X don’t have the same risk.

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