Airbus gearing toward 63 A320s per month; Boeing sure to follow

By Scott Hamiltn

By Scott Hamilton

Oct. 5, 2015, © Leeham Co. Airbus appears to be closing in on a decision to boost the production rate of the A320 family to 63/mo by the end of the decade, a new report from Bernstein Research Group says.

Boeing is sure to follow with rate boosts for the 737, Bernstein writes in an Oct. 1 note.

Leeham Co. has been predicting these moves all year, and in LNC’s interview with Airbus Group CEO Tom Enders last month at the opening of the A320 Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Mobile (AL), Enders indicated the decision to boost rates would be made by the end of the year.

Bernstein’s note is the first I’ve seen with the number 63 per month as a more-or-less definitive Airbus target, a result of its interview with Enders on Sept. 29. John Leahy, Airbus chief operating officer-customers, hinted at rate 60 all year long, also indicating even this dramatic increase from the already-announced plan to go to rate 50 was insufficient to handle the backlog.

Boeing long ago announced it will take 737 rates to 52/mo by 2018. We reported early this year Boeing’s been evaluating taking the rate to 60-63 a month, the latter being the capacity of the current 737 plant in Renton (WA). Bernstein now reports the same.

Our Market Intelligence indicates Boeing may now be considering a 737 production rate even higher than 63: up to 75/mo.

This would require an entirely new FAL since Renton will cap out at 63/mo. There are a few options for Washington State and the Seattle/Puget Sound area.

Boeing could open a 737 FAL at Boeing Field. For those with long memories or who know their history, the 737 actually was first produced at Boeing Field and moved to Renton shortly after the FAL opened.

Or, Boeing could move the 737-based P-8 assembly line to Boeing Field and expand the 737 operation to the current P-8 line, something that logistically would have a lot of advantages.

Or, and I think this is more likely, Boeing could open a 737 FAL in another location, with China being the top of my list of possibilities.

The announcement last month that a 737 Completion Center will be opened in China seems to be a “telegraphing” move toward a 737 FAL there. LNC has already written why we thought Boeing had to set up this expanded business in China. Note I use “had to,” and the choice of words was deliberate.

Boeing’s 737 backlog is significantly less than that for the A320, but it’s still out beyond 2020 and Boeing sometimes finds it difficult to offer delivery slots to win key campaigns.

The supply chain needs an estimate 18-24 months notice to gear up to the kind of rate increases being discussed, which will have to occur in increments.

The next few months will be more than a little interesting to watch.

49 Comments on “Airbus gearing toward 63 A320s per month; Boeing sure to follow

  1. There is going to be a requirement for some 180 LEAP engines a month which is some production line for an engine manufacturer (on the basis that they capture 50% of the Airbus A320 market).

  2. Neither Boeing nor Airbus will ever see those rates. The global economy is circling the drain as we speak. Economic slowdowns, instability, and a probable regional war in the middle east will at least delay these plans significantly, if not kill them outright.

    • The prophet of doom has spoken. I fully agree with your thoughts. All this productive capacity could give an overhang that destroys the marketplace in the medium term, short term cash inflow but longer term costly underused production facilities. I am sure both Airbus and Boeing will be able to utilise the basic infrastructure in terms of new products (MOM maybe) but the tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers are likely to be a tad more circumspect.

      Is this simply a statement of intent by both main OEMs that there is no place for competition from whoever is looking to enter the market? Sorry BBD/ Comac/ Irkut etc. Will the engine manufacturers be encouraged to favour the big boys at the expense of others?

      • ” I am sure both Airbus and Boeing will be able to utilise the basic infrastructure in terms of new products (MOM maybe)”

        Unlikely, its looking like a clean sheet MoM won’t justify its existence. The market niche is just squeezed too hard by A321 and A330-200.

        • I wasn’t necessarily thinking that project hence the maybe. I was thinking more about the need for developed manufacturing space going forward. I thought we had a pact on this forum that MoM was the current discussion point of interest as the A380neo has progressively lost its lustre (chuckle)

        • The high end in the 321 and the low end of the 330 will not be able to compete with a clean sheet MOM.
          The MOM is coming and sooner than people expect.

          • A 10 frame, stretched A321 (i.e. A323X?) – 49.85m long and re-winged with an all new high aspect ratio composite wing – some 25-30 percent larger than the current A32X wing – should be able to compete nicely with a similar sized MOM. While the MOM would only have one door for boarding – ahead of the wing -an A323X would have 2 separate doors ahead of the wing for boarding.

            With the A321neo already in a near monopoly position in its market segment, a high capital cost Boeing MOM would IMJ have a hard time competing effectively with both the smaller and fully depreciated A321neo and an A323X. The development costs for the latter would be significantly less than what would be required for a Boeing MOM, which would put further downward pricing pressure on the MOM. It would obviously also have to compete as well with a fully depreciated A330-900neo in use on short to medium range routes.

            Finally, A MOM would IMJ be better if the cross section allowed for 8 abreast – sort of like an A300/A310NG. An extra aisle is IMO just too much cabin space wasted for only one extra seat.

          • A stretched 321 would be really pushing the frame and despite the new wings and engine you will still be dealing with a forty odd year frame and it’s increased drag. Also lengthening a narrow body leads to increased loading times. Also where has it been decided that the MOM would only have one door for boarding?
            A narrow body stretched to it’s limit or the bottom end of a long in the tooth 330 won’t be able to effectively compete with a new twin aisle hitting the 757, 767 market. The only question is the size of the market (which most analysts seems to think is sizable) not if anything currently flying will be able to compete with it.

          • The fuselage lengths of the A321, an A323X*, the 752 and the 753 are, respectively, 44.51m, 49.85m, 46.97m and 53.73m. Hence, an A323X would be about 3 metres longer than the 757-200 and about 4 metres shorter than the 757-300. Why, then, would a 10 frame stretched A323X be “really pushing the frame”?

            * A323X: 10 frame stretch of the A321.

            The aluminium A32X airframe is only 7 years older than the aluminium 777 airframe. Why would the usage of the A32X airframe be “problematic” vs. a MOM – having an airframe possibly built using aluminium as well – while the 777-9X don’t seem to have the same problem vs. the all composite A350-1000?

            Also, why would an A32X lead to increased loading times if doors 1L and 2L are both used for boarding/de-boarding?

            The cabin length aft of door 2L would be roughly the same as the total cabin length of the A320 – so, I can’t see why boarding/de-boarding using doors 1L and 2L would take more time than what it takes to load/unload an A320 with passengers.

            As for the MOM, do take a look at the 767-200 and A310, neither of which have enough room forward of the wing for a second door. A MOM, sized to compete with an A323X would have about the same cabin length as that of the 767-200. Of course, if the base line version of the MOM were to stretched to the same level as that of the 767-300, then you’d be able to have both doors 1L and 2L ahead of the wing.

      • Make no mistake: When the 737 program ends, Boeing’s Renton factory ends as well.

        It would be dead now had the market not spoken otherwise. It’s already half or less than half it’s original footprint, due to the “move to the lake” strategy several years ago, which was in fact, a premature winding down. A gross miscalculation time and market wise.

    • If u think the elcomic slowdown will never recover then yes, I believe even slowdown there will be a recovery in 5 years which then they will order even more planes to make up for lost times

  3. Flood? It’s too early for the theatrics. There is no answer that Boeing needs. Airbus is contemplating a higher production rate and Boeing will soon follow. It’s funny that the word flood is used despite the Boeing deliveries have outpaced those of its European competitors for the last couple of years. Flood lol

    • He’s talking about the massive number of A321 deliveries to come which may close the door on Boeing being able to profitably design and build a MOM aircraft….and he may be right. I don’t think it’s too early to consider this possibility.

      • I’m not sure a “flood” of 321 deliveries would spell doom for the MOM especially when, as a clean sheet design, will be much more efficient than the rapidly aging 321 and 330 frames. Regardless there will only be some direct competition between the models.

    • Is it really crazy to suggest that the 737 MAX is not yet “maxed out”. Would it be crazy to design new wings which would allow this plane to have taller landing gear which in turn would allow it to have the same large dia. engines of the a30neo? It’s a significant investment but it could trump Airbus and take a greater share of orders in the mid 2020s? why not throw in a new nose and cockpit…

      • Yep, by the time you fix all the 737 issues you have a whole new aircraft.

        As much I love the 737, its one generation too long in the tooth.

  4. >>> Our Market Intelligence indicates Boeing may now be considering a 737 production rate even higher than 63: up to 75/mo. <<<

    I guess Boeing could go to 75/Month, but this makes me wonder just how long could they sustain such a rate, and how much would it cost Boeing and it's suppliers to tool up to do such a rate? In other words….Might this 75/Month Rate – which looks to be unsustainable – be a bit of a waste of money to pursue?

    • Unless what Scott mentioned is true and they believe they are losing orders due to lack of near term delivery slots.

  5. @Raul

    I expect Airbus to maintain at least 60 percent market share ovr the long run – not only in backorders, but in deliveries as well. In short, 52 MAX deliveries per month is IMJ not sustainable beyond 2021- 2022. I also expect the 737-8MAX to closely match the A320neo in market share. The difference is the A321neo (i.e. the A321 is projected to account for 44 percent of all A32X deliveries as early as 2016). The 737-9MAX already seems to be DOA. In fact, if the A321neo would account for 50 percent of all A32Xneo deliveries – while the A320neo would split the market 50-50 With the 737-8MAX – then, the 737MAX would only be able to achieve one third market share in the long run. In order to further bolster/maintain their marketshare, Airbus could even launch an A322neo – same size as the 737-9MAX (e.g. 7 frames longer than the A320neo and 6 frames shorter than the A321neo. In comparison, the 737-9 is only 5 fuselage frames longer than the 737-8MAX). An A322 would have much better take-off performance, though, than the similar sized 737-9MAX.

    http://airwaysnews.com/blog/2015/06/01/key-takeaways-from-airbus-innovation-days-2015/

    63 A32Xneo aircraft deliveries per month – and 60 percent market share – would mean that the market would only have a demand for 42 737MAX aircraft deliveries per month.

    52 737MAX aircraft per month – and 40 percent market share – would mean that the market would have a demand for 78 A32Xneo aircraft per month.

    What you are seeing is IMO corporate theatrics played out by Boeing’s management in order to try to pump up the stock price. Apart from the mature market of North America – where the MAX has about 60 percent market share – the NEO is leading by a wide margin everywhere else* (NB: not counting Africa where the MAX has garnered a grand total of 28 orders – zero for the neo). For example, in Asia the neo has about 71 percent market share* (i.e. 1355 units sold vs. 542 for the MAX) – and I don’t expect the situation to improve for Boeing in the Asian single aisle market for the next 10 to 15 years.

    * http://www.pdxlight.com/neomax.htm

    Boeing in late 2012 had hoped to take its first order for the 737 MAX from an Indian airline. This hope was rekindled when Boeing had mentioned revealing a “sizable order” for the MAX from an Indian carrier, during the 2014 Singapore Airshow.

    Twice, Boeing’s announcements never came, although media reports Jet and SpiceJet have signed for Boeing 737MAX airplanes, in the double digit range.

    This is in sharp contrast to Airbus A320NEO orders placed by IndiGo and GoAir. Further widening the Airbus-Boeing gap are reports of the likelihood of IndiGo placing an order for 200-250 “more” aircraft.

    Recording the largest aviation growth, Asia is where all airplane manufacturers have trained their guns. But Asia is a cost conscious market, where the likes of low cost airlines sprout often and thrive. That makes, statistically, a great market for Airbus, and a bleak outlook for Boeing, for now atleast. Few orders for Boeing 737 airplanes are overshadowed by Airbus’ wins.

    Is Boeing going?

    http://theflyingengineer.com/2014/02/16/switching-fleets-more-boeing-to-airbus-than-the-other-way-around/

    • I agree with your numbers and you will get no argument from me.

      Boeing simply blew it, and if they chase the market vs Airbus, it’s going to cost them even more.

      It’s pretty easy to think that the LEAP 1B has less overhead for improvement over the LEAP 1A and PW/GTF as well.

      Boeing can only concentrate on more realistic rates, and cost efficiency going forward. The rest is all hot air.

      • This is the same company that experienced a severe production meltdown on the 737NG in 1997 – when the production output was just a fraction of what they’re now talking about – and which now wants to re-insure investors that all is honky dory in Boeing single-aisle land, by telling them that production, apparently, can be raised to 75 per month- never mind the huge market lead of the A32Xneo in the single-aisle market outside North America. What’s for sure, though, is that if they really try to chase the market at this level, the 1997 crisis might not look as bad – in retrospect.

        • “… that all is honky dory in Boeing single-aisle land.”

          That should be hunky-dory. 🙂

    • I believe some Airlines like Alaska are taking the 737-9max.

      Not that it fully compete with the A321 but it does slot in for Ak and probably South West.

      Not something to hang your hat on but also not terrible per the model.

      Where it does fail is it simply is not an A321 and can’t do what the A321 can and will be doing.

      • Out of the 217 firm order for the 737-9 MAX, 170 are for airlines/lessors based in the US/Canada. Hence, it seems to be not much of a market for it outside North America.

    • I love these folks who keep saying 60% market share when both companies are producing the same number of frames per month? I can tell you I have won every order there is but what makes more sense is to judge how many actually get produced. I’m also concerned with how many can actually fly at one time. We still have constraints with airports, access to pilots, and air traffic control around the world. Just because I can sell 5,000 a/c does not mean the world can absorb those 5,000 without major changes in infrastructure. Or could I be wrong, you Airbus fandome on Leeham will certainly get ME straight.

      But hey, put new wings on and add some plugs to the A321 and there is no way a MOM can ever compete, why because the space is owned by the A320 family. This site has become the kiss of death for all Boeing. Scott seems to allow this endless commenting about how Boeing is run by the dumbest people in the aerospace industry, and ANYTHING they do will NEVER be as good as Airbus. The A330NEO, how wonderful was that warmed over solution to a solution that is now way better than the 787 with its new innovative approaches. Kill it here, and make sure it is killed effectively, by the Airbus fans on this site. Did anyone every know that the 787 has more frames flying now than all of the A330/340/300 produced for the first 30 years of those program? Naw, there is no way Boeing could be that smart to produce 300+ frames over a four year period. But a digress!!! Boeing is a company that produces SOFT solutions.

      As a point of fact, the NEO was the answer to not being able to find greater than 20% improvement in a clean sheet design from Airbus. Using the John Leahy school of marketing, do some slight changes, and come up with a marketing ploy. Hell tell them it will do what they say and the world will beat a path to your door. Bad part about it, he did it and people keep listening to the Airbus warmed over aerospace solutions. He has made the world believe that old designs have endless potential to performance improvements!! What is so bad about it is the world is buying the story.

      How can this keep happening, the people who have turned aerospace on its ear with warmed over half witted clean sheet approaches? When left to their own devices, clean sheet designs from Airbus become A380s that have sold as many as 787s that have been produced in four years? The A380 was so good it too now needs a NEO to save it from it death by 1000 cuts. Come on John you sold the industry on warmed over NEOs, but you have cold feet with doing the biggest of all? Give Tim his NEO and he will give you 70-100 A350s plus 200 A380NEOs. Tim’s giving you time to have your internal sales pitch to management for another warmed over innovative solution!!!

      The MAX was Boeing’s answer to warmed over design. Not that Boeing was happy with the approach, but hey John has made his way into Boeing’s halls also. I still think it was the dumbest thing they could have done, but I like pushing the windows of engineering and I don’t work for the company. What that says to me is both companies needed something (clean sheet or mod) to make the next small step in performance improvement. A re-winged A321 with new plugs will not address the wholesale next step, so stop with the “how great is the A321 stories.” It is nothing more than a stop gap which has found a comfortable space. No more no less.

      There are limits to any mods, why because base designs have limits. MAX may have reached that point before NEO, but here is the remarkable point I see EVERY time I look at a 737. It is a design that began in the 1950s and it has been able to hold it’s own to a configuration that was designed 20 to 30 years after it had been in the market!!!!! Tell me anything that has been able to survice competitively for as long as the 737/707 has done? Xerox is gone, Polaroid is gone, Kodak is gone, quite a few car manufacturers are gone, nations are gone, and you folks have the chops to downplay Boeing and the 737? Get real people the 737, is no “SOFT” offering. It is the true wonder in an era that has the kind of survival that many companies wish they could achieve with entire companies, much less a single program. Assembly processes have changed and the program was built to produce what, 100 per year MAX!!!, and now they are saying the program can and will do 60 per month? You people are crazy. Respect that the overall industry has made major strides with a VERY small compromise to safety. Get over yourselves and show some respect for a program that has made the aerospace industry what it is today. No way Airbus could have pulled this off without the 737 because Airbus would never have designed the A320 without a mark to shoot towards. For without the 707/737 NONE of this would be possible. I tip my hat to Airbus, but I truely thank Boeing for creating a marketspace that has evolved to produce trillons of dollars annually for BOTH sides of the pond and beyond.

      You people have got to find it in your hearts to be more honest in your commenting. Scott is going to have an Airbus based page, designed exclusively to bash the company feeding his neighbors. You folks keep this form of commenting going and Scott will need to move to somewhere in Europe so his pro Airbus page is not seen as the one thing that killed the US aerospace industry.

      I get your wings, plugs, dreams, and understand what the real meaning of SOFT is , and it certainly is not anywhere near a 737. Have a good day.

      Vincent

      • L7,

        You are entitled to your opinion, but when you bash Airbus’ John Leahy, you go too far. John Leahy is one of the all time greats of Aerospace: a Giant of the Industry. John Leahy is a hero of France: he won the Legion of Honour. The Force is strong in him.

        Personally, I keep a photo of John Leahy on my dresser – positioned right between my portraits of Mother Theresa and Justin Bieber – I hold him in such high esteem. Sometimes I light the candles I have placed before John Leahy’s photo when I pray to Orville Wright. Tonight, I’ll pray to Lord Orville and request that he forgive you for your fanboy indiscretion – your near blasphemy.

        Meanwhile, I beseach you to let go of the hate…it will consume you. I mean, it is only a small step from blaspheming a hero to strangling kittens – and you don’t want to be doing that!

        Please…let go of the hate.

      • @L7/Vincent

        Past and present performance is no guarantee of future results. So, just because both OEM’s are roughly producing the same number of single aisle aircraft today, doesn’t mean that both OEM’s will produce the same number of single aisles, some 5-7 years hence. Things have changed. The fact of the matter is that Boeing doesn’t have the backlog to support 737 MAX production at the same level as that of the A32X-neo – for an extended period of time.

        In fact, the A32X-neo family has between 59 and 83 percent market share outside North America (- and Africa. 100 percent for the MAX in Africa. Market thus far: 28 units.)

        —Neo————MAX
        80 percent vs. 20 percent in South America
        59 percent vs. 41 percent in Europe
        63 percent vs. 37 percent in the Middle East
        71 percent vs. 29 percent in Asia
        83 percent vs. 17 percent in Australasia

        Source:
        http://www.pdxlight.com/neomax.htm

        “We still have constraints with airports, access to pilots, and air traffic control around the world. Just because I can sell 5,000 a/c does not mean the world can absorb those 5,000 without major changes in infrastructure.”

        For sure, the US played a big role in pioneering commercial aviation, but today the crossroads of global air commerce are places like Dubai, Doha, Istanbul, Singapore and Hong Kong. These are the places – and not New York or Los Angeles – that are setting the standards by continually upgrading their airport infrastructure.

        For example, the global air transport market is set to double by the year 2030 and quadruple by the year 2050. The path most major cities, including heavily populated centres and megaregions – outside the US – are following is not the type of automobile-driven Development the US has chosen to follow for more than 60 years, but rather, development paths consisting of integrated transport hubs by way of seamlessly linking hub and spoke airports, high-speed rail networks, intercity rail networks, regional rail networks, commuter/suburban rail networks, city metro networks in addition to urban and suburban bus services. Many of the world’s megaregions will be linked by both high speed rail networks (distances of less than 600 miles) and effective air transportation networks. With the availability of an integrated rail network and high speed rail, airports can easily be located more than 50 miles away from city centres

        Now, you’ve obviously got a very US-centric view on the world at large and you don’t seem to really grasp what’s actually happening in the industry outside the US. It may not be very helpful, though, in trying to understand the world through the prism of the American experience – where the decline of the US airline industry has been helped by shortsightedness, underfunding, and flyer-unfriendly policies.

        The US spends roughly 2 percent of GDP on infrastructure, about half what it did 50 years ago, according to a U.S. government report from October 2011. Europe, apparently, spends around 5 percent and China 9 percent.

        America continues its race to the bottom of the pile because of a government that refuses to do the things that made us the great nation we were and should be. President Obama gave a news conference today and made a statement I simply had to fact check because it seemed unbelievable. Not one American airport was in the top 25. You can find the Skytrax ranking here. The first American airport to appear, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Intl Airport, comes in at number 30. The first major hub in the US appears at number 36, Denver. While we continue to cut and cancel projects to upgrade our infrastructure, we are being passed by many. Singapore, Amsterdam, Hong Kong, Beijing, Munich, Vancouver, Tokyo, Auckland, Helsinki, Copenhagen, Narita, Cape Town, Tambo, Lima, Melbourne, and many others are all ranked above us. These are in industrialized, 2nd world, and third world countries.

        http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/04/30/1205892/-America-In-Decline-No-American-Airport-In-Top-25-You-Would-Not-Believe-Who-Beats-Us

        “But hey, put new wings on and add some plugs to the A321 and there is no way a MOM can ever compete, why because the space is owned by the A320 family.”

        Again, a high capital cost Boeing MOM would IMJ have a hard time competing effectively (i.e. on price) with both the smaller and fully depreciated A321neo and a stretched derivative version having all new, composite wings. Hence, I’m not saying it can’t be done, but IMO the business case for a MOM – in a best case scenario – is still dubious.

        “This site has become the kiss of death for all Boeing. Scott seems to allow this endless commenting about how Boeing is run by the dumbest people in the aerospace industry, and ANYTHING they do will NEVER be as good as Airbus.”

        Nonsense.

        If anything, Boeing is operating in an environment where quarterly capitalism is the name of the game. Aerospace manufacturing, though. is a high technology and capital intensive industry requiring long-term thinking- and Boeing, apparently seems to be operating in a short-term world.

        As for quarterly capitalism vs. long-term capitalism, here’s an interesting analysis:

        Most important, the dialogue has clarified for me the nature of the deep reform that I believe business must lead—nothing less than a shift from what I call quarterly capitalism to what might be referred to as long-term capitalism. (For a rough definition of “long term,” think of the time required to invest in and build a profitable new business, which McKinsey research suggests is at least five to seven years.) This shift is not just about persistently thinking and acting with a next-generation view—although that’s a key part of it. It’s about rewiring the fundamental ways we govern, manage, and lead corporations. It’s also about changing how we view business’s value and its role in society.

        There are three essential elements of the shift. First, business and finance must jettison their short-term orientation and revamp incentives and structures in order to focus their organizations on the long term. Second, executives must infuse their organizations with the perspective that serving the interests of all major stakeholders—employees, suppliers, customers, creditors, communities, the environment—is not at odds with the goal of maximizing corporate value; on the contrary, it’s essential to achieving that goal. Third, public companies must cure the ills stemming from dispersed and disengaged ownership by bolstering boards’ ability to govern like owners.

        https://hbr.org/2011/03/capitalism-for-the-long-term

        “Did anyone every know that the 787 has more frames flying now than all of the A330/340/300 produced for the first 30 years of those program?”

        I’m not sure what you’re smoking.

        From 1974 through 2004 (30 years), Airbus delivered 537 A330s ( i.e. not counting the 255 A310s that were delivered from 1983 through 1998).

        From the end of 1993 through September, 2015 (some 22.5 years), Airbus has delivered 1224 A330s.

        From 1993 through 2012 (19 years), Airbus delivered 377 A340s.

        “You folks keep this form of commenting going and Scott will need to move to somewhere in Europe so his pro Airbus page is not seen as the one thing that killed the US aerospace industry.”

        As for blogs related to civil aviation, I’m not aware of any that are particularily pro Airbus, but I could name a few that are very pro Boeing and exceedingly hostile towards Airbus (i.e. verovenia.wordpress.com, http://www.strategicaeroresearch.com, https://o530w77waviationfact.wordpress.com etc.).

        Perhaps your problem is that you’re unable to provide sound reasoning and that you therefore try to compensate by resorting to name-calling, etc..

      • @Vincent

        “Did anyone every know that the 787 has more frames flying now than all of the A330/340/300 produced for the first 30 years of those program?”

        Are you serious? Did you check your numbers before writing that? As of Septembre 2015, 21 years and 9 months after EIS, the A330 alone had 1224 units built. And you can add another 377 for the A340. As for the A300, Airbus’ first ever aircraft, 561 were built. To which we can add 255 A310. That amounts to 2417 frames. If you need to inform yourself about Airbus I recommend reading “Airbus: The True Story”. It was written by Pierre Sparaco, Aviation Week’s European correspondant.

        http://www.amazon.com/airbus-true-story-anglais-Sparaco/dp/2708992082/ref=sr_1_11?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1444159063&sr=1-11

      • @Vincent

        “I love these folks who keep saying 60% market share when both companies are producing the same number of frames per month?”

        Would you say the same thing if Boeing had 60% of market share in the widebody sector, like it had until recently?

        “This site has become the kiss of death for all Boeing. Scott seems to allow this endless commenting about how Boeing is run by the dumbest people in the aerospace industry, and ANYTHING they do will NEVER be as good as Airbus.”

        Scott allows all comments as long as the posters follow the rules. If you want to defend Boeing you are free to do so right here, right now. No one will stop you. But I have noticed that Boeing’s unilateral supporters generally prefer to post on pro-Boeing websites, not on neutral ones like Leeham News. By the way, when I discovered LN four years ago the fist thing I noticed was that for many Boeing fans anything Airbus does will never be as good as Boeing. But for some reason I see this less often today. Perhaps Airbus has finally gained some respect among them. And if that is indeed the case we can thank Leeham.

        “He [John Leahy] has made the world believe that old designs have endless potential to performance improvements!!”

        That is exactly what Boeing is doing, with only one new design in twenty years. What do you think the 737 MAX is? The 747-8? The KC-46? The 777X? Answer: Old designs. And in some cases VERY OLD designs. And they are all marketed as “the latest and the greatest.” Especially the MAX, which is actually the oldest of them all. With a grandfather look to go with its priceless grandfather clause.

        “There are limits to any mods, why because base designs have limits.”

        You got that right.

        “Get over yourselves and show some respect for a program that has made the aerospace industry what it is today. No way Airbus could have pulled this off without the 737 because Airbus would never have designed the A320 without a mark to shoot towards.”

        And the DC-9 was the mark towards which Boeing were shooting when they designed the 737. No way Boing could have pulled this off without Douglas.

        Vincent, let me ask you the following question: If Lockheed had succeeded and Airbus had failed, and if the former were where the latter is today, would your feelings be any different towards Lockheed? I don’t want to answer for you, but I suspect that if Airbus were an American company you would love them to death. As for myself, I do love Bombardier to death because I happen to live twenty miles down the runway where the C Series made its maiden flight. So it is the more remarkable that Scott doesn’t take sides for either Airbus or Boeing despite the fact that he lives in Boeing’s backyard. And I am sure he loves the latter as much as he loves his country.

  6. 600/yr in 2020 seems a given for both aircraft. 700 might be a bridge too far.

  7. All this seems to be putting out fires due to sales teams selling more aircraft than they could possibly throw out the door. It may be a good decision in the short to medium term but what about the long term when these aircraft are replaced by new generations. Does this mean that 10-15 years down the road we’ll be seeing over 100 p/m? For Boeing, a China assembly line is logical but how many aircraft are really going to come out of those doors, especially new generation aircraft with which one would hesitate to to assemble in China due to copywrite issues.

    • A China assembly line is logical ?

      That would require a whole new infrastructure investment by Boeing to get its sub assemblies to China. Dont forget currently the only way fuselages get from Wichita to Renton is by rail. The wings are made in Seattle area.
      Then there is the training of the assembly line workers, not so easy as they found out in Savannah.
      Im guessing that Witchita could be the location for a new FAL

        • Didnt close down the factory, sold the Wichita division to Onex Capital who created Spirit Aerostructures.
          Boeing retained its military division on a neighbouring site which was closed down in 2013 ( did Spirit pick up the space to expand 737 fuselage production ??)
          Seems all the sites in Kansas and Oklahoma, at Wichita, Tulsa and McAlester were sold off to Onex Capital and are now with Spirit.

  8. For what it’s worth, IMO, Boeing should have launched a NSA (not the max) in 2011 and just tweaked the NG to hang on to market share. The MOM should commence ASAP but should simply be a better A32x. with 6 to 8 in. bigger ID. (ie 13 to 15 in bigger than 707 (oops 737)). Maybe two wing choices for different different ranges and lengths.

    The max, however efficient, is just plain old in fuselage (that 50’s windshield) and too narrow. Think how much wider first world people (esp. usonians) and others have gotten in the last 55 years.

    • So, what you’re saying is that Boeing should have a short-range/intermediate range MOM with 18-inch wide seats, while the rest of their WB/long-range portfolio would only offer 17.2-inch wide seats. Wouldn’t it be better to be able to offer wider 18-inch seats on 15 hr. flights instead of on MOM flights with a duration of 3 – 7 hrs.?

      It seems to me that the people running Boeing has bet the company’s future on a common seat width standard first introduced by the 707. Why change now?

    • “For what it’s worth, IMO, Boeing should have launched a NSA (not the max) in 2011 and just tweaked the NG to hang on to market share. ”

      I wish they would have, too…but could they have done it without putting the company at risk? I mean, the 787 Program was bleeding red ink with no end in sight….and I still don’t see the end. Meanwhile, Boeing needed – or thought they needed – to answer the a350-1000 with the 777x : and this is going to cost them no less that $9 Billion. An Upgrade of the 737 will cost them $4 Billion and losses on the Tanker (which everyone can see comming) will cost them about $2 Billion. That’s $14 Billion right there – on top of a bleeding 787 program. Where’s was the money to come from to develop and NSA?

      Likewise, Airbus has finally got the a380 Bleeding to stop, but are still taking financial hits on the a400 (losing money for as far as Airbus has dared forecast!), and the financial fun with the a350 is just beginning as production ramps (should break even on a production basis in 2018…hopefully). Meanwhile, Airbus has got the A330Neo and an A320Neo Programs to complete for about $5 Billion. Money at Airbus is kind of tight, too.

      Also, the tremendous number of plane orders we are seeing are not going to last forever….they never do. Sooner or later, times will get tight for awhile and it’s then that a company doesn’t want to be servicing a hell of a lot of debt if they can help it. So, I think it’s a race to see who can get their Aircraft Programs in good financial shape before the good times end and belts have to be tightened again. Or…as that old crud Warren Buffet once said, “It’s only when the tide goes out do you find out who’s been swimming naked”.

      And I think “swimming naked” thing is critical. We should know for sure in about 2020 who’s been “swimming naked”, and who hasn’t. And if one party is naked, then I don’t think they are going to have the financial strength to develop the next generation aircraft – and they will be a loser.

      • “And I think “swimming naked” thing is critical. We should know for sure in about 2020 who’s been “swimming naked”, and who hasn’t. And if one party is naked, then I don’t think they are going to have the financial strength to develop the next generation aircraft – and they will be a loser.”

        I think long term Airbus is in a more favourable position than Boeing, who by the start of the 2020 decade will be going through a critical time in their history. They will have by then started to face a costly transition period for the 777 and will possibly also be going through a severe decline in production of the venerable 737. Most fortunately the 787 will likely be cash flow positive by then, but a large chunk of that fresh money will have to be “re-ivested” to absorb its accrued deficit. This unfavourable convergence will bring an increasing number of analysts to come to terms with the fact that the Emperor has no clothes and is indeed swimming naked.

  9. End of the decade is in like what 4 years? Still loads of things that could happen. I’m betting nothing higher than 56pm will be breached in the next 10 years

  10. Airbus will never out produce Boeing in the forseable future. A lot of the narrow body order is vapor ware. They don’t have the production line to trump Renton .

    • Airbus has not one production line like Renton for the A32x. Airbus only has 4 production lineS for the A32x.

      According to the A322 I always have in mind the folding wing tip patent for small aircraft obtained by Airbus. Good bye MOM!

  11. I find it rather strange that the original article that reported the talks is no longer available* and has been replaced by a different article that uses the same previous link that announced the discussions that are now supposedly terminated. They have not only altered completely the content of the article but also its date. It sounds as if Bombardier has since told the Reuters source something like this: “WE HAD TOLD YOU THAT THIS WAS OFF THE RECORD! In terms of damage control I have seen more subtle manoeuvring…

    * If you have already read the original article referred by CapitaineScarlet above, try his link again and see the difference for yourself. It is now identical to a different one supplied by keesje in his reply. Someone should bring this to the attention of the Deuxième Bureau, or whatever they call it today. 😉

  12. Looked up the A321, 350 A321 CEO and nearly 1000 A321 NEO’s in the backlog, 1140 in operation. It seems the A321 fleet will double in the next 4-5 years. The last doubters (E.g. Korean, United, JAL, KLM, Silkair) will likely order, UA being the biggest fish. Not because they love Airbus so much, but because of unique specs and no alternative from Boeing.

    The status quo between A & B on NB has been broken. Boeing is bluffing its way through with undisclosed customers and production hike (announcements). A good look at NEO/MAX order book reveals most A-Brands are in the other list. Something has to happen. Boeing knows but can’t say.

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