Boeing to boost 787 rate to 14/mo

Sept. 13, 2017, (c) Leeham Co.: Boeing announced today it will boost the production rate of the 787 to 14/mo in 2019, confounding analysts who believe the rate is not warranted.

LNC‘s own analysis agrees. The backlog through Aug. 31 is 700, down 20 airplanes from Dec. 31. The book:bill rate has not exceeded one since 2013.

The rate is not sustainable, LNC believes, beyond 2020.

Boosting the rate, however, will throw off cash, helping Boeing meet its free cash flow targets at a time when the company is transitioning from the 777 Classic to the 777X. The higher rate, from 12/mo, is worth a half point on the profit margin, one analyst told LNC.

Boeing also increased the accounting block by 100. Some of Boeing’s current sales, with deliveries scheduled for well into the 2020 decade, were outside the current accounting block of 1,300 aircraft. It’s too early to conclude if the expanded block merely brings these airplanes into the block or the move reflects confidence in future demand, or both.

We’ll take a deep look at this next week.


179 Comments on “Boeing to boost 787 rate to 14/mo

  1. May not be sustainable in the long term but (assuming the supply chain can keep up) it will help Boeing’s cashflow and profitability as pointed out above but it will also free up a bunch of delivery slots that will put pressure on campaigns that are in a dogfight with Airbus and might put negative pressure on the A350.

    • @Bruce Levitt:
      “…will put pressure on campaigns that are in a dogfight with Airbus and might put negative pressure on the A350.”
      Especially when the 350 program is still stuck in cabin production/delivery delay mode thx mainly to Zodiac. With a huge backlog and many deliveries already delayed for existing 350 customers, hard for Airbus to find near term 350 slots for new customers to buy.

      Over @ the 330Neo program side, it’s also stuck @ delay mode this time thx to the significantly delayed T7000 fm RR for the 1st 339 prototype. As a result, also no near-term 339 slots available for new customers to buy.

      I strongly suspect Boeing 789 won the “dogfight” against Airbus 359/339 over the MH widebody order yesterday @ least partly due to this 14/mth 787 production plan fm 2019. Coincidentally, 1st delivery for MH is also scheduled for 2019….

      • Zodiac is causing lots of damage to the 350 program and the 787 is gaining ground because of that.

        • @Anton:
          Always interesting to see history repeating itself in this industry…especially fm relatively recent history.

          Less than 10yrs ago, serious supply chain issues were causing lots of damage(even survival issues) to the 787 program and the 330Ceo was gaining ground because of that…

          Apparently for these 2 airframers, neither is interested to learn fm the mistakes made by the other guy….

      • The profit producing the 787-9, -10’s are maybe pretty good as the learnig curve finally reduced costs hence Boeing want to boost the rate as staff, tools and space becomes available from the 767, 747 and 777 lines and they want the cash. Especially as Airbus still are having supplier/development problems to boost the rates of the A320neo’s, A330neo, A350 and A400M’s. Maybe less on the A350-900’s but having only one FAL in France instead of a competing one in HAM limits the production and productivity development. Airbus did not think A350 production could be more than 10/month after several years of production but now are out of most slots. If the cost to make the -1000 is lower and they can offer good 777-300ER trade in deals its volume will go straight up.

        • @Claes:
          “The profit producing the 787-9, -10’s are maybe pretty good as the learnig curve finally reduced costs.”
          Also the fact that in term of production process & resource requirements, 789 and 78J are estimated @ 90% or higher in commonality.

          “Airbus still are having supplier/development problems to boost the rates of the A320neo’s, A330neo, A350 and A400M’s.”
          Let me summarize:
          P&W is killing the cashflow fm may be about half of the planned deliveries assuming CFM has the other half.

          RR is killing the cashflow fm all backlogs as 1st 339 delivery is now delayed by @ least 9mths for a development program that was supposed to last no more than 42mths fm launch to 1st delivery.

          Damn Zodiac spoiling everything.

          I think by now, even Airbus Military itself is getting bored with numerous in-service issues+nonstop modification demands by military customers…

          “Airbus did not think A350 production could be more than 10/month after several years of production but now are out of most slots.”
          Frankly, I don’t think 2 FALs would hv helped Airbus to improve 350 slot availability much when all cabin finishings are still being done in 1 location like today and 1 key 350 cabin supplier still decided to be naughty….

          “If the cost to make the -1000 is lower”
          Unlike 789 vs 78J, such gain will rely mostly fm the general learning curve effect alone. 35K differs significantly fm 359 in terms of production process+resource requirement because it is not a ‘simple stretch’ of the 359….just check how long it took RR to develop+cert a new TXWB core specifically for the 35K. While I suspect the only real diff(if any at all) in the landing gears of 789 vs 78J is just tire size/pressure, even my 5yrs old boy can easily tell the diff in landing gears 359 vs 35K simply by counting the tires on each with his little fingers….

          “they can offer good 777-300ER trade in deals”
          Assuming Boeing somehow lost the ability to do the same to push 779 or even 789/78J deals…

          “…its volume will go straight up.”
          Before the 35K will eventually do that as U are predicting now, its volume has been going straight down recently. Thx to its top customers UA(Was #2) and CX(Was #3) fooling around with their 350 fleet mix, 41 frames hv been removed fm the 35K firm order backlog in the past 7~8days….nearly 20% lost in volume fm what the 35K had @ the start of this mth.

          35K backlog is now only 68% larger than the already small 380 backlog.

      • I think the maintenace deal for their existing fleet might have been the deciding factor for MH, they are already taking 359s so 789s as well is a bit of a meses.

        • @MartinA:
          All 359s joining MH are leased and obviously with light to very light maintenance support requirements due to their new build status.

          Unlike the 359 lease which may expire in 5~6yrs(possible to last longer though) and MH can exit relatively ‘clean’ upon expiry, the 789s are direct buy and far more ‘sticky’ financially for MH.

    • I think Boeing checked with the supplier base before telling shareholders the rate was increasing?

      Boeing going to 14 per month now is major blow to Airbus. They went to the supply base and took over all available capacity. The move is being done at a point when Airbus can do nothing but ask the industry to wait while they get their act together. Guess John and all the jokes about the 787 might have been better served not being said? Yes the A350 is an outstanding program but not doing the necessary focus to make an effective program is coming back as a challenge. The challenges have been shared by others.

      Was it this site that said the A330NEO was a simple engine upgrade with limited risk? Did I also read here that Boeing would never push to the 14 frames per month rate? Not enough demand or something to that effect? Boeing did the same thing in 2002 when they ran up the unsustainable 737 line,that has continued to increase. Many said that would not stick, but it did.

      Scott says it is not sustainable, and honestly does Boeing really care about Leeham’s POV? This is a move driven by making the industry understand that Boeing is going to set the commercial standard in the widebody space. Smart move when you have others thinking they can enter the space (Russia and China), a competitor trying to get their production program to a consistent run rate, all the while having consistent demand (which is money), and an ability to offer customers slots. You don’t get these opportunities often, so whether others question whether its sustainable or not, you hit. And, if you’re smart you can use this window to raise your prices slightly. Where can the customer go?

      Also, what about the poor production process established by Boeing for the so sad 787 program? Oh no, will they be able to bring down those stupid development costs? If they go to 14 per month will there finally be a window for people to stop writing those stupid articles every quarter?

      Please go to 14 per month, people need to finally become reporters and stop regenerating the same old crap about how sorry the 787 program is and how Boeing have mismanaged the company’s finances. Give us something new to read from the great makret analysts.

      • “Scott says it is not sustainable, and honestly does Boeing really care about Leeham’s POV?”

        Of course not, @Vincent. I’m under no illusions about that. But others do.

        • Scott is correct based on current orders.

          But Boeing will not only be making aircraft more quickly available to customers but part of their strategy could also be to further “choke” supplies to the A350 program from suppliers by increasing their production, such as Zodiac?

          With the BBD-Delta-CS100 case still in the air I wont rule it out from Boeing!

          • Being an older guy, I have seen this played out too many times to think Boeing is right.

            First a ramp up costs time and money. There is no free lunch.

            And the market is not sustainable at those rates.

            You are not going to choke the A350, they will figure it out if the rate is there.

            This looks a lot like the A330 ramp up, short term but you better know it won’t last. The A350 will not be in trouble forever. So for a time Boeing gets to run loose.

            Like Japan in WWII it won’t last. 6 months later it stopped and the Tide Reversed.

            More encouraging for Boeing is the continue erosion in the A350-1000 orders being swapped to -900.

            So as a naner nanner to those who loved the one trick pony thing I detest, it sure looks like the A350 is a OTP!

            That also leave the market to Boeing in the 777X segment.

        • Actually Scott, Boeing cares a lot about Leeham.

          After all, their current case against BBD dumping CS1 in the U.S. mkt is @ least partly build upon an analysis published by Leeham(unintentionally though and out of context anyway).

      • My preference as passenger is the the 330/350’s, but Boeing has made one hell of a comeback with the 787 program. “The ugly duckling that is becoming the Swan”?

        • @Anton:
          For any pax who are aware of a website known as even exist, I think he/she by now would fully understand that pax preference probably ranks #99, ahead of the manufacturer CEO popularity on Facebook @ #100, among 100 factors which determine the relative sales success of 1 type over another in the mkt.

          If pax preference is even among the top 10 factors, Airbus would be planning 4/mth production rate for 380 in 2019, not 1.5/mth they are actually planning for 2019.

          This is especially true when any perceived superiority of 330/350 over 787(or vice versa) by some pax are so small/tiny in objective measurable terms that they hv no actual effect on their fare-generating capabilities(i.e. 1 type does not generate+actually earn a fare premium over another).

          • Sorry i made a typo re 380 production rate:
            Airbus is actually planning 0.67/mth for 380 in 2019, not 1.5/mth.

  2. Boeing might know something we don’t. Emirates are looking at 787 options, AA could go for a “major” 787-9/10 combo order to replace the 359 order and aging 330’s in its fleet. Malaysia just ordered 789’s instead of 339’s.

    Airlines seems happy to replace 330’s and 767’s with 787’s. The Mom could fade away increasing 787 demand.

    Maybe 14/month is not enough?

    • I too believe there is a major sales opportunity for which Boeing needs near term slots

    • @Anton:
      “Boeing might know something we don’t. Emirates are looking at 787 options, AA could..Malaysia just…”
      Actually, “Boeing might know something we don’t” know but can guess based on credible hints fm top potential 787 customers who hv not yet ordered that plastic bird in bulk yet. E.g.:

      It’s just a a matter of when, not if, QF will order a whole bunch more of 787.

      1. After a dramatic financial turnaround, QF longhaul is currently @ or near its historic peak of profitability….the flying kangaroo is ready+able to fund far more new hardwares for longhaul.
      2. They only hv 789 x8 on firm order today but the quantity they need to fulfill their longhaul expansion plan+330 fleet eventual replacement will require far more than just 8 frames.
      3. They still hv 15 options + 30 purchase rights on their 787 contract, all priced @ amazingly deep discount rate secured 12yrs ago shortly after 787 program launch. Almost no chance QF will abandon/forfeit any of these.
      4. QF CEO Alan Joyce stated repeatedly that QF will convert more 787 options into firm orders as soon as the ones fm the 1st batch are proven profitable in QF op….a relatively easy task these days given the low oil prices. 1st 789 flight by QF is scheduled to begin within 3mths.

      So, potentially upto 45 more delivery slots for QF alone which is equivalent to 3.2 mths worth of total 787 production even @ the 14/mth rate.

      • Anton : Emirate has take the order off the table for either A350 or 787.

        They are in the throes of a crisis. They are looking to merge with (Qater or Etihad, I can’t keep those straight)

        • Etihad and Emirates is my call, getting rid of the Alitalia and Air Berlin dead wood was the first step to clean liabilities in a JV/merger.

          Qatar got a blood nose with AA but sure they are working on something.

  3. The supply base being able to keep up is a big question. It will be interesting to hear more about that aspect of the rate increase – especially on tooling. Has the supply base become efficient enough to produce the addition 2 aircraft per month without needing to add tooling – expensive to build and expensive to qualify.

    • @Alan:
      May be U missed reports over the past 1-1.5yrs about Boeing had been asking major suppliers to study+prepare for potential adoption of 787 production plan @ rate 14/mth….

      787 production going to 14/mth is not a new idea Boeing has struck on today & announced and only now beginning to assess its supply chain readiness.

      • Increase production rate should in theory result in lowering unit costs.

        This could potentially give Boeing sales people more flexibility when it gets to pricing?

      • @FLX: Boeing has been asking the supply base for far more than 1.5 years about a 14 per month rate – but asking is different than performing. I suspect that there will be much kicking and screaming from the overseas suppliers and it will require commitments of more or sustained workshare on this and future programs to justify factory expansions and new capital equipment to go from 12 (which was a stretch to begin with) to 14. They also do not have Boeing’s deep pockets of cash to fund all the capital expenditures. The inner mold line tooling used to build the airplane is the enabler of going to an unprecedented assembly rate for a wide body aircraft – made of composites no less. All the parts are tooled and fit together without rework or shimming. The 787 assembly process is truly revolutionary because of how it was designed, tooled and built. Unfortunately, every process has its “herbie” and the 787’s is the fuselage barrel build time. How many mandrels and how many fiberplacement machines and how many autoclaves. All very expensive to build and qualify.

        • @Alan:
          Point taken.

          However, after far more than 1.5yrs worth of assessment as U said, Boeing should hv a pretty good idea of readiness(e.g. including willingness to invest more on tooling if that’s necessary) fm its supply chain before the 14/mth decision.

          I think most 787 suppliers, especially those in Tier1 & 2, are largely in a similar financial shoe as Boeing. They still hv a huge backlog for 787 components but want to bring forward the cashflow fm that backlog earlier to more quickly fill the big hole of sunk cost dug earlier….even if it may mean spending more on tooling.

          After getting burnt so badly b4 fm its 787 global supply chain, I would assume Boeing wouldn’t dare to touch production rate until everyone in its supply chain agreed to be onboard and then audited them to see whether they are actually capable in what they’ve agreed to do(unlike last time).

  4. Is the 787-9 becoming the wide body equivalent off the MAX8 for Boeing?

    With new engine options on the horizon for the 787 class this might just push Boeing to focus on the NSA-Type1, 180+ seats?

    And something just as interesting which is broadly 787 related, EasyJet and long haul;

    • @Anton:
      “Is the 787-9 becoming the wide body equivalent off the MAX8 for Boeing?”
      It is.

      And by the same token, 359 is becoming the Airbus equivalent of the 789. The 350 variant swap by UA recently is the latest indicator….UA had the 2nd largest backlog for 35K prior to the swap.

        • What new engine option?

          Neither RR or GE is going to offer and engine that shoots their current stuff in the foot. They have to recover from their own debacles on the 787 (short of fuel burn, RR more so as they had to build a whole new engine)

          GE is still pippin theirs.

          • RR was building a newer engine for the A350 program where GE doesnt have a engine.
            Makes sense to lever its Trent XWB technologies for the higher thrust T1K-10

  5. Surely they have access to better information than we lowly armchair OEM CEO’s? I have been waiting for the stock to tank for the last 3 years, and it hasn’t happened yet despite all the theories to the contrary (including mine).

    • Your investment strategy sadly seems to be as effective as mine. I have learnt that my inner cynicism works against the unknowing/uncaring optimisms of the market far too often until there is a market correction.

  6. Make hay while you can. The A350-900 is much better, but Airbus can’t produce them. So why not. Boeing won’t make a lot of profit because the A330neo is in the background

    • @philip:
      “Make hay while you can.”
      How so?

      “The A350-900 is much better..”
      How so?

      Just amusing whenever hearing sweeping declaration like this without substantiating/backing up such claim.

      “because the A330neo is in the background.”
      Unfortunately, it’s remaining in the background for far longer than 330Neo current & potential new customers wish for…

          • @ Philip

            If things coalesce around these two models (787/350) then you could well be correct. You say FAL limit of 13, I was thinking given the layout of facilities at TLS and the production process that it would be relatively easy to swap out A330neo space to increasing A350 production

          • Believe the cancellation of some 350-1000 orders could also create opportunities for Airbus.

            Qantas and potentially others are looking for an extreme range aircraft aircraft that could fly up to 11 000Nm (20+ Hours)at full passenger load.

            (I rule out a 787 because no one wants to fly 3-3-3 in an 787 for 20 hours and doubt if the 787-9’s MTOW could be increased much without major mods).

            An Airbus option could be an A350-900 with the 351’s wing, landing gear, 97KLb engines (effectively and 351 shrink) to 359 size (front and after sections). Not sure if the 359 and 351’s got the same centre sections?

            This should “easily” handle an MTOW increase to 310+T, if AB could find place to put the additional fuel you will have one monster range aircraft with 300+ pax at a very comfortable 3-3-3 or even better 2-4-2 in the back.

            The cancelled and deferred 350K1 slots (engines, landing gear, wing) could potentially accommodate the “A350-9000” .

          • Anton:

            No, Airbus can’t afford another all new program that does not return anything.

            All the cancellations do is make A350-900 harder to get in near term.

          • Was wondering about the supply chain of 6 wheel landing gear and the XWB97 engines which will be cutback?

        • @Philip

          But we don’t see the A350 programme going beyond 10. There is more caution at Airbus, why is anyone’s guess. Having said that a longer term viewpoint could be the following

          B787 at 14
          A330neo at 4/5
          A350 at 10
          B777x at 2/3
          A380 at 0.5

          In simple terms the bigger aircraft not gaining acceptance and the A380 limping along because of the reticence of Airbus to admit defeat. In income terms the revenues will be broadly similar which for Airbus could be considered a win given historical weakness in the Widebody market

          • The 330/(NEO) backlog is ~330 aircraft which is ~5 years production at 60 per year which is more than the 787 at 14 aircraft a month (700 aircraft backlog from current orders).

            If the AirAsiaX order goes belly-up its a years production but could see some more 330-200 orders over the next year from LCC’s? So is Airbus playing in the hands of the 787 with its long backlogs?

            Increase in oil prices, airport slot availability, etc could shift things towards the 350-1000 in the longer term?

            A shorter haul (6K Nm) version of the 350K1 with lower MTOW and ~84Klb engines could even become plausible for high density routes in the long term?

          • @Sowerbob

            My crystal ball says that Airbus will go to 13/month, the maximum for the FAL. But they need to get to 10/month first. So we are looking at 2020-2021

            I know Leehams disagrees, but I think Boeing have got it right. There are orders out there, Airbus can’t produce, Boeing can produce!

          • If you order an A350 today you could get it in >8 years the way things are at the moment. If its an 787 with the increased production rate you will get it in <5 years. So where do you place an 50 aircraft order?

            The 330's production peaked at around 9/month. Just wondering why AB can't increase it now to ~6/month. With a backlog of 330 that will be ~55 months production (4 1/2 years).

            Shouldn't AB more aggressively market the 330-900 (NEO) and continue with production of an A330-200"E" (an -200 with wing interior etc of the NEO but with CEO'S), these could support an increased production rate.

            ….or are they timing things for an A330 replacement/(NMA?) that could take ~7 years to come into production?

          • @Sowerbob:
            “In income terms the revenues will be broadly similar..”
            Let alone this statement is questionable @ best. Here are the major problems:
            1. We’ve to assume cost/profitability is no object which it certainly isn’t in reality with major stockholders breathing down the necks of Airbus/Boeing CEOs every quarter if not every mth already.
            2. We’ve to assume 330Neo is sold @ similar avg contract price as 787 which is nearly impossible regardless of the ridiculous list price differential between 789 vs 339($264.6m vs $290.6m….a customer has to be really stupid to decide to pay $26m more for a machine that carries the same seat count but with @ least 15% lesser payload/range).
            3. Avg contract price for 359 has to be significantly higher than for 789/78J which I seriously doubt. Higher I agree but not significantly higher.
            4. Avg contract price for 35K has to be similar to that for 779. If that’s true, 779 will continue to outsell 35K by 1.6:1 ratio like today if for no reason other than 4 more LD3 positions.
            5. Anyone(Mostly just EK) still buying 380 has to be paying a significantly higher contract price than for 779. In reality, Airbus may still be able to convince EK/SQ(The last 2 real customers which hv ordered 380 over the past 5yrs not counting the bad joke by Amedeo and the Skymark ‘compensation deal’ by ANA) to buy more 380s @ 779 price level or slightly higher but no one else will.
            6. We’ve to totally forget Rev$ fm freighters in which Boeing still does @ least a little bit while almost none for Airbus(a grand total of 332F x4 in the backlog).

        • @philip:
          “Airbus have ran out of delivery slots!”
          Strangely, U made it sound like something Airbus should be celebrating.

          Pretty sure this outcome is not something J.Leahy/Airbus sales team feel like celebrating but rather a big problem to solve against their enemy fm Everett in the worldwide battle to swamp airline widebody fleets with as many 350/330Neo or 787/77X as possible and in as little time as possible.

          • @FLX:

            I don’t think that. Airbus are giving Boeing uncontested airspace. Airbus need to increase production of the A350 or they will lose

            Out of interest how can you interpret my words in the manner that you have!

    • “Major” A330 replacements starts to kick-in ~2025. By then even the 330NEO will start to be dated. At that stage new engines should be available for the 787 (and MoM if it ever happens?).

      So Boeing could potentially pick up a large portion of those replacement orders if AB don’t wake up.

      • An cheap A330neo with greatly reduced empty weight and updated and lighter ceo Engines (like a new baby with GE9X father and a CF6-80C2 mother) might be a popular A330 replacement unless the Boeing 797 steals the market. GE still let RR have all the Airbus widebodies for themselves but it can change one day.

        • That’s the lines that I am thinking along, there are several airlines that operates GE’s and want to stay with them. They don’t want to go the T7000 route when you are already operating GE fitted aircraft. Range of 6000 Nm should be more than enough in most cases.

          Even Delta could be interested in an A330-200″E” withe GE engines to replace 767’s?

    • @Sowerbob

      It isn’t the FAL. It is the supply chain. Think about it:

      You have a $10 million home but the toilets don’t work. Your home is a slum even though you have a $10 million home. Airbus are not happy!

      Having said that, the FAL does have a limit of 13/month. To go beyond that that you need to do what Boeing have done: Two FALs. So your views are right

      • After a lot of discussions, Boeing could have better out manoeuvring strategies but the A350’s and CS100/300’s are better aircraft that they can produce.

        …and the A320 Plus, if they had the production (or will) capacity could be a magic aircraft. But the AB guys says “don’t want to wake-up” Boeing. Think I know who needs a wake-up?

        So AB is actually showing disrespect to to their multi-Billion $ clients in not offering them the best?

  7. The 787-10 of A339 could replace the A330’s and 767. Especially, the 787-10.

    The 787-9/10 can not replace all AA 777-200ER missions. I don’t believe the A350 order will go away.

    • @Jose Marchena:
      “The 787-9/10 can not replace all AA 777-200ER missions.”
      Disagree. Actually they can because:
      1. In terms of usable cabin floor area, 772ER is within about 10% of 789(smaller) and 78J(a bit larger).
      2. 789 offers more range than 772ER while 78J can offer more seat capacity than 772ER. Both scenarios exist on all AA routes flown by 772ER today.
      3. An airline never goes broke for flying a type smaller than before but may go broke for flying a type bigger than before.

      But AA can does not mean AA should or would.

      ” I don’t believe the A350 order will go away.”
      Me neither with regards to AA. But probably for a diff key reason than yours:
      Too costly for AA to cancel 350 order.

      • United Airlines have now gone all in with the A350. In the end they will buy at least 80 and perhaps up to a 100. American Airlines will do the same. The performance of the A350 is just too good. A sweeping statement, yes, but the evidence is coming through:

        For example, Cathay made clear that its A350 are 25% better than the 777 (see Aviation Week). Cathay have the model which is 3+ tonnes overweight and engines that are 2+% better than specification. The 2019 model will have the weight out, will have aerodynamic improvements and improved engines. Together they suggest the A350 will be 28-30% better than the 777.

        United Airlines couldn’t walk away from those numbers. American Airlines won’t be able to either!

        This then comes to buying the A350-1000 or the A350-900. The seat/mile costs are the same. So expect airlines to buy the A350-900 unless they are sure they need the capacity. I for one didn’t understand why United Airlines upgraded to A350-1000. There current fleet is 777-200/200ERs. That is A350-900 territory!

    • Having a quick look at AA’s seat capacity on its wide bodies (rounded and average numbers). 767 (220), A332 (260), A333 (290), 787-8 (220), 787-9 (260), 772 (280), 773 (310).

      Typical seating, 787-9 (290) 787-10 (330), 772 (300), 773 (360), 359 (325), 350-1000 (366).

      AA in fleet and order, 332 (15), 333 (9), 767 (28), 772 (47), 773 (20), 787-8 (20), 787-9 (22), 359’s (order 22).

      Actually a “dogs breakfast”. The 350-900 (and -1000’s) could fit nicely into AA’s requirement, bur Airbus CANT sort out the 350’s production line?

      The 777-200ER’s are 16-18 years old while the 777-300ER’s (9 older than 15 years and 11 newer than 5 years).

      You can replace 47 B772’s with 51 B787-9’s for the same seat count and replace the 9 B773’s with similar, low price and available?

      MAX8’s will replace 319/320’s, order for 100 321NEO’s to replace 757 (to some extent) and older 321’s.

    • Maybe I see things different and/or wrong. Boeing’s MoM could be a marketing ploy for airlines not to buy the A330-800 or even 321’s?

      They could actually be working on an NSA to compete with the A321/2 as a start.

      AB should just go for a 4500+Nm A322 (not much higher capacity). This should rattle the Boeing tree to show their hand, and if its the NSA could see increase in A338 sales?

    • Some irrational thought on AA’s A350 order of 22 aircraft.

      Was just wondering if AA could not become a launch customer for an A322 with an order of say 150 by converting their current A321NEO order of 100 and the A350 order?

      A slightly bigger aircraft (15-20 seats) with an efficient range of up to 4500Nm could fit in well with AA’s routes and fleet size requirements.

      Basically all destinations in South America will be in reach from Miami and most West European destinations in reach from Philadelphia for example

  8. i believe the company plans to go to 14/month in 2018 because by 2020 they will have to drop rate back down due to moving all 787 production to Charleston in order to put the MoM in Everett

  9. When did it become “a rule” that a/c manufacturers need five years plus as general, “prime” needed backlogs? It would seem three and a half years is plenty, with maybe 5 to 10% or so open slots at 1.5 and 2.5 years out. (I realize there’s always some cancellations, schedule juggling, but, really, there’s serious airline planning to receive aircraft, say, seven years out? Heck, some of these airlines ordering haven’t been in existence for five years. And large, leasing company orders, at least for aircraft going on operating leases, must provide some flexibility, no?

  10. FLX wrote, “Especially when the 350 program is still stuck in cabin production/delivery delay mode thx mainly to Zodiac. With a huge backlog and many deliveries already delayed for existing 350 customers, hard for Airbus to find near term 350 slots for new customers to buy.”
    Not only that, but they have major problem with B/E Aerospace as well.

    I wonder why Boeing doesn’t seem to have these issues with their interiors suppliers that Airbus has.

    Anybody have any ideas on that?

    • Some “ugly” thoughts crossed my mind on the Zodiac interior supply issues?!

      Delta is using someone else (forget the name) and seems to be going OK.

    • @Aero Ninja:
      “they have major problem with B/E Aerospace as well.”
      Thx for the info. I didn’t know B/E Aero also causing cabin problem for 350 delivery.

      “why Boeing doesn’t seem to have these issues with their interiors suppliers that Airbus has.”
      They had..about 2yrs ago. The most famous ones that I recall caused the 1st 787 delivery to AA and EY delayed by almost 0.5yr.

      Just that the cabin problem for 787 delivery didn’t last as long as for 350 now, resolved relatively quickly and the media didn’t picked up as often. I suspect the quick reaction by Boeing was because by that time, Boeing was so used to putting out fires(literally in the case of batteries) everywhere in its 787 supply chain that they became so proficient in putting out such fires….Airbus never really had many fires going on in its 350 supply chain until Zodiac and for its 320Neo supply chain until P&W….

    • Boeing has also applied lessons learned on aircraft seating to the 737 program in 2016 by starting to buy direct from Encore instead of allowing airlines to fully customize the cabin interiors by dealing with Zodiac and B/E (and others).

  11. My analysis shows existing 787 customers have a requirement for an additional 650 aircraft up till 2025.

    If we assume the 787 will be the aircraft of choice for 2 out of 3 purchases there will be a requirement for an additional 400 aircraft on top of the existing backlog of 700 aircraft. 1100 aircraft in total.

    This equates to approximately 6.5 years of production at 14/month from 2019.

    The next few years will be pivotal for the 787 / A330NEO/A350 orders race. I suspect the 787’s advantage is that it can operate all of the routes of the A330NEO/A350 combo at either equivalent or less seat mile costs.

    Quite a versatile aircraft.

    In creasing the accounting block by 100 aircraft allows Boeing to better compete for orders with the A330NEO.

    This will probably result in higher profits (positive cash flows increased production is greater than discounts given to airlines to win orders)

    • I think the tables will turn. Until now, the A330 have become the dominant player in the 767/A330 category. I think Boeing will dominate this category with the B787 family going forward. That is excellent for Boeing because that is a huge market.

      Boeing on the other hand dominated the larger 777/A340 category. If market predictions are right, the tables will turn and the A350-900 and -1000 will dominate that market going forward. The A350’s are bigger ( 777 sized planes) and fly farther than the 787.

      The 777x’s will do better than the A380 but, in the grand scheme of things, not much better.

      • @Jose Marchena:
        I largely agree with your assessments and arrived @ the same conclusion actually 10yrs ago upon 350XWB launch:
        The relative widebody mkt dominance in terms of raw sales # by Airbus and Boeing would swap

        Airbus relative dominance would shift fm the lower end(i.e. 332/333) to the middle(i.e. 359).
        Boeing relative dominance would shift fm the middle(i.e. 772ER) to the lower end(i.e. 788/789)

        “…the tables will turn and the A350-900 and -1000 will dominate that market going forward”
        I fully agreed for the 359.
        I no longer agreed for the 35K due to slow sales over the yrs and the shift in 350 fleet mix by 35K top customers such as what UA and CX just did.

          • @TransWorld:
            Just another piece of evidence as proven throughout widebody mkt history that nobody has the resources to establish dominance fm the smallest all the way to the largest in every product size/performance category……even when there’re only 2 players left since 1997.

          • Wide body acquisition costs are ~US$900K/seat while the single aisles around US$650K.

            Single aisles need around 300-325Lb of thrust per pax while the wide bodies 450-525Lb.

            Single aisle range around 3000Nm and wide bodies 7000Nm.

            So a good figure for a MoM should be around US$750K/seat and 375Lb thrust per pax. Thus for a 240 seat MoM the (list) price should be around US$180m, engine requirements 2 x 45KLb and a range of 5000Nm.

            Think these are realistic numbers. This shows me a MoM could be the aircraft of the future for many airlines? So OEM’s get your ducks in a row.

            p.s. I am not an accountant.

        • I am interested, what do you think will dominate the B77w space? I can’t believe the x will do so instead I believ that space will not be dominate in terms of airline preference. If they can get the range with minimal CASM penalty at 70% size then that is the safe profit maximising option

  12. I see this as a bit aggressive but no more than that. Benefits to Boeing (if sustainable) are substantial cost savings through sweating the assets and massive increase in FCF going forward. It serves to cover the loss of the B777 as cash cow which must be a real near term concern.

    The concerns are can the supply chain handle it? Further is this a means of attempting to kill off the A330neo? It appears that the B789 and A359 share the new sweet spot in terms of airline thinking, if that is so then why not give it a go.

    On a cynical note those who make the decision will not be around to reap the benefits or brickbats. So the risk to Boeing is not suffered by the CEO however the resulting increase in share price and value of options will.

    • Good points here, only see the impact of the CEO when he is 10 years into retirement.

      What will Boeing’s cash cow be in 10 years from now. Maybe the 787 but not the 77X. The 737 will be in the wheelchair, I doubt if a MoM will do it.

      Lets see what Boeing’s CEO brings to the table?

  13. If I was Airbus my concern would be the A350-1000

    Slow ramp up, more orders fort the 900 and the longer it takes to get one, let alone a viable fleet.

    Sorry Keesje but I have to call it a OTP

    • The 350-1000 from whats been reported is to good a plane to go down.

      Like the 777-300ER with a slow start it will come though.

      My gut feel (as also an old man, exchanging credentials) the 777-9 is going to be a flop. It looks like an overgrown alligator with two broken legs.

      But for the “old wingers club”, there is nothing like an 727-100 taking of from a 4000+m unpaved strip in the Andean with cockpit door flapping and the Captain smoking a big Cuban cigar during take-off.

      • To clarify strips 4000+ elevation, length, doubt if its much more than 1500-1800m.

        • Having flown that bird in Alaska, yea its iconic.

          Had one good landing in it ever. And the pax new it, clapping and cheering broke out when there was no bounce!

          Have to see on the 777X. Its going to be the last big bird standing.

          If the 1000 can’t sell, its not going to.

          Back to trying to thread between the 787 and the 777. While I am amazing they did find a spot (900) the 1000 seems to have been too much and too little.

      • @Anton:
        “The 350-1000 from whats been reported is to good a plane to go down.”
        somehow inexplicably contrast with
        “My gut feel….the 777-9 is going to be a flop.”

        “It looks like an overgrown alligator with two broken legs.”
        If the above is 1 of the most important factors to determine relative sales success, I hv nothing more to add…and U and I are likely living on 2 diff planets…or even dimensions.

        “Like the 777-300ER with a slow start it will come though.”
        And here lies a fundamental problem:
        77W did not hv a slow start unlike the 35K

        77W achieved 209 net sales less than 6yrs after program launch in early 2000.
        35K achieved 171 net sales now exceeding 10yrs after program launch in early 2007.

        And I’m starting to perceive an even more fundamental problem in the 77W/35K mkt:
        The most popular cabin size for airlines to operate extra-longhaul(i.e. 12hrs sector & beyond) is shrinking.

        77W was popular circa 2005-2015 because about 350seats(manufacturer nominal 3-class, not actual airline config) per flight was most popular. That mkt now appears to be shifting towards 300seats by 2020 & beyond. This is not something new as we’ve seen similar mkt dynamics before when the most popular size for the same mkt was about 400seats circa 1990-2000….owned by the grand daddy 744. Airbus miscalculated and betted in the wrong direction with 380 to replace 744 but that’s a diff story….

        In a nutshell, the 35K may be too late for the party in the mkt because the party venue where the 77W was partying has moved. By the same token, 779 won’t be immune to this shift. None of these has anything to do with whether 35K or 779 is too good(or ugly) a plane to go down/flop or not….

        Good news for Airbus is that the 359 will be the most appropriately dressed to catch that party coming to town circa 2020….but pretty obvious the 789, slightly under-dressed for that party…so to speak, is also invited to the same party.

    • Disagree. There is no reason to believe that the the -1000 will do any worse than the 300ER.

      The 300ER’s will have to be replaced and, given what we are seeing, the 777X will be big and heavy.

      In fact, I think there is every reason to believe, that 777-8 won’t do much better than the 200LR and that the 777-9 will do only slightly better than the A380.

      Like pointed out years ago, the 350-900/1000 combo will be land in the safe sweet spot

      • Ahh, the future is so hard to see.

        If you need a big mover it will the 777-9

        Both compliment and actually get a reasonable number of passengers is the -8.

        Singapore with the touted super long range A350-900 carries all of 172.

        It will be interesting.

        • Most of the times the world make you feel like a criminal when you are South African, below a link to an aircraft I had long exposure to, and I am proud of it.

          This is an excellent video, got tears of pride in my eyes for past achievements and destruction of a once a proud SAA airline.

          Not the typical full of himself glamour boys, but solid guys that will give their all.

      • @Jose Marchena:
        “…no reason to believe that the the -1000 will do any worse than the 300ER.”
        2 of the top3 customers for 35K defecting fm its backlog within a wk not a good enough reason for U?

        Even if 35K sales eventually match 77W’s record somehow, U’ve got to admit it’s gonna be a long+steep climb for any type to increase sales fm 171 units(Total for 35K as of today) to 823 units(Total for 77W as of today)….Airbus will need to sell an avg of more than 65 units net every yr for a decade.

        • @Joe Marchena:
          “The 300ER’s will have to be replaced..”
          Problem is the replacement doesn’t hv to be and actually often is not the same size as the type it is replacing.

          “the 777X will be big and heavy.”
          It clearly will be relative to the 35K. But so as the 359 relative to the 789…. The pot deriding the kettle as black?

          On the other hand, 380 being the biggest AND heaviest never seem to bother so many folks, including some here, who luv the 380……

          “Like pointed out years ago, the 350-900/1000 combo will be land in the safe sweet spot.”
          Yes, I remember that claim but more importantly, who pointed out the above? J.Leahy/Airbus sales team?

          And there goes the credibility/objectively fm that claim because no sane person would believe Team Airbus would say otherwise….

        • To FLX

          @Jose Marchena:
          “…no reason to believe that the the -1000 will do any worse than the 300ER.”
          2 of the top3 customers for 35K defecting fm its backlog within a wk not a good enough reason for U?

          No, not a good enough reason for me. If the 777X starts selling like hot bread other than in the middle east or for those suspect of using the -9 to replace the A380, then I will worry about the A350-1000. I would also worry if I see 777-200ER’s being up-gauged to the 777X.

          The middle east order for the 777X means almost just as much as their order for the A380. A niche plane.

          I would go even further by saying that given the new and ongoing losses by the ME3 airlines and the slow erosion of mega hubs traffic by low cost long haul carriers and planes like the 787/A359, there might be some increased risk associated with the 777X.

          Nobody knows. We will know when it becomes clear what lclhc and the 787/359 will do to passenger traffic. And who is not to say, that lclhc may not start filling up A380s full of passengers and reset the whole platform of air traffic as we know it?

          • @Jose:
            “No, not a good enough reason for me.”
            It’s weird but somehow I got this feeling that if just 1 customer(not even 2 like what happened to the 35K) deflect fm the 779 backlog, it would be ‘a good enough reason for you’ ‘to believe 779 will be a flop in sales…..

            Heck, @Anton already predicting 779 will be a flop despite no deflection has occurred yet in its backlog.

            “If the 777X starts selling like hot bread other than in the middle east…”
            Interestingly, the 35K is starting to appear to sell like semi-“hot bread” in the middle east with 44% of its backlog now owned by airlines based in that region…

            “..would also worry if I see 777-200ER’s being up-gauged to the 777X.”
            No need to worry if U subscribe to my mkt theory re the emerging longhaul down-sizing trend down to 300seats – almost no airlines would upgauge fm 772ER to 778/779….@ least not the rational ones.

            There’re 7 known customers for 778/779. 4 of them(CX, LH, EY, QR) hv never operated 772ER while EK hv completely retired theirs last yr(EK had never operated more than 6 frames anyway). Only SQ & NH still fly 772ER but it’ll be gone fm SQ fleet long before the 1st 779 appear in SQ colors. Over @ NH, they now use 772ER(a mix of old and very young ones) exclusively on Japan domestic routes 1st to replace all 744Ds(Yes, a serious downgauge) a few yrs ago and to replace 20+yrs old 772s recently…no way their 779 order will hv anything to do with their 772ER in the future.

            “I would go even further by saying that given the….there might be some increased risk associated with the 777X.”
            Certainly agree. In fact, I expect:
            1. Very few new 778/779 order fm anyone @ least over the nex 3yrs…till well after 779 EIS.
            2. More than likely some cancellations(LH being my top favorite bet).
            3. Almost all current customers will seek delay for some deliveries except NH & SQ.

            ” who is not to say, that lclhc may not start filling up A380s full of passengers and reset the whole platform of air traffic as we know it?”
            I think U did exactly that only 1 paragraph earlier as below:
            “…given the new and ongoing losses by the ME3 airlines and the slow erosion of mega hubs traffic by low cost long haul carriers and planes like the 787/A359….”

            Factors fore/against Y also apply against Z….more so for Z when Z is a more ‘extreme’ product than Y.

    • @TransWorld:
      “If I was Airbus my concern would be the A350-1000”
      Absolutely agree. This bird is not cheap for Airbus+RR to develop fm the 359 unlike how Boeing developed the 78J fm the 789.

      In fact, I suspect it’s cheaper for Boeing to assemble a 78J than a 788 these days….

      • In the bigger picture Airbus is going to lose out big time in the 250-300 class size with increased 787 production.

        A 250-270 seat “797” will kill the 330’s with 787-9 as the long range option for Boeing.

  14. And its about time we had something to argue about, the comments of late have been minimal.

    Lets keep with it folks!

    • Ja, its great. Wonder if any of the OEM’s exec every look at our “hanahana”.

      Maybe the Leeham crowd should start their own airline. Destinations, aircraft, etc. Then we will see the “bottom line”.

      What will the first aircraft be, although totally AB myself, most likely B737-800NG’s (with Scimitars) if its my own airline.

      • Make it a 900, its going to be crowded!

        And thank you for the Winglets. Love em, hate the hype AB put on calling them something else.

        You ever see a shark with two fins 180 feet apart?

    • @Transworld and @FLX, ldts argue:

      We were told US carriers would dump the A350. Two out of three have said no. American Airlines will say no. They will want to buy the A350 in bulk.

      The decision of United Airlines is rather more significant than many think. American Airlines haven’t bought enough A350s. But the same is true of european arlines, British Airways, Air France/KLM and Lufthansa, all of which want more. There are many more airlines all over the world who want the A350

      Expect a dog fight over delivery slots for the A350 for Airbus can’t produce them. United Airlines bit the bullet and went all in! Many airlines will regret not doing that

      In the mean time make hay while you can. The 787-9 is a one trick pony. The rest of the Boeing line are donkeys. So why not. Take advantsge while you can!

      • The 359 is one hell of a plane to fly in, its size make disembarking still very tolerable even if u are in the back with the family. If u want worse than a 757-300 disembarking try it in a 777 with 3-4-3, totally c….!

        Flying twice with the family in the back (11-12 hour flights) with a 787, my 12 year daughter said the first time, “this is not a nice aircraft”, and that was after flying in an “old” 330-300.

        Put Wi-Fi and other nonsense in a sardine can and then it must be good?!

      • A thought that crossed my mind. Isn’t the A339 just messing up things for Airbus in the twin-aisle sector (p.s. I like the bird).

        A330-200/”700″ (an 800 “Lite”) and A359 (various OEM/MTOW options), that’s it. And the 350K1, a pedigree, that will come through.

        • Anton: Its a shame the 12 year olds don’t runt he world, they have a straight forward outlook!

          Sadly its the suits that rule.

          If it gets to be an issue the Airline just move back to 8 across.

          • Phillip: At least give the 787 credit for being a 2TP (two trick Pony!)

            How can a specific model not be a one trick pony?

            By definition a 787-9 is not a 777-9. But then a 777-9 is not an A380 either.

            As he goes off muttering, that makes no sense.

      • @philip:
        “We were told US carriers would dump the A350…”
        I wasn’t told about that. May be I missed that memo….every time I commented that it’ll be too costly for UA & AA to ditch their 350 order outright?

        “American Airlines will say no. They will want to buy the A350 in bulk.”
        “American Airlines haven’t bought enough A350s.”
        I think so because outright cancellation costs too much and AA CEO said recently that his 359 x22 order is too few for AA hub network scale(UA said similar along the same theme in explaining why order is increased fm 35 to 45).

        “…decision of United Airlines is rather more significant than many think.”
        Of course it’s significant as they had been communicating to the Wall Street community(And general media too) for over 1.5yrs that they were studying alternatives to their 35K contract including a) conversion to 359, b) conversion to other Airbus types and c) outright cancellation.

        “…haven’t bought enough A350s…But the same is true of…British Airways, Air France/KLM and Lufthansa, all of which want more.”
        It’s true in the case of LH as LH CEO said in public recently that he thinks LH possibly has not ordered enough 359 per their recently revised network plan(essentially downgauge for more routes especially for MUC hub).

        Situation is not as simple @ BA and AFKLM. 1st of all for AFKLM, their overall financial projections are just too weak for them to make more 350 commitments than current level. For BA, they don’t even hv any 359 on order to begin with unlike AA & UA so it’s logically premature to say BA has not ordered enough 359. For both BA & AFKLM but unlike LH, both hv installed 787 op+support infrastructure to be an easy alternative to 350. It’s interesting to note that BA has no 359 on order while AFKLM has no 35K on order but both hv 78J on order – a type that sits right in between the two 350 variants in terms of size. I agree both hv not ordered enough widebodies for their replacement needs but 350 clearly won’t be the only option for them.

        “There are many more airlines all over the world who want the A350”
        Far more so for 359. Far less so for 35K.

        In any case, same thing can be said about the 789.

        “United Airlines bit the bullet and went all in!”
        Not precisely.

        They did re 359 along with a 2-3yrs 1st delivery delay which is helpful for both CapEx relief @ UA and 350 delivery stress @ Airbus – a win-win.
        Conversely, UA clearly went ‘all out’ with 35K especially with cheap, old tech 77W x18 spoiling that party.

        “Many airlines will regret not doing that…”
        So if “many airlines” want no regret, must order 350?
        “Many airlines” ordering 789/78J instead of 359 will regret?

        Wow…..the bias(or devotion/worship) towards 350 on display here can be so extreme where mkt reality doesn’t matter anymore…

        “In the mean time make hay while you can.”
        In the mean time start a 350 religion while you can.

        “The 787-9 is a one trick pony.”
        Total sales @ a glance:
        358=8(Assuming this project still exist fm Airbus+Asiana perspective)
        359=679(including recent ones by UA+CX)


        The pot just luv keep calling the kettle black….

        “The rest of the Boeing line are donkeys.”
        In contrast, the 380, 35K, 358, 339 and 338 @ Airbus widebody line are all hot stallions which hv been setting the sales chart on fire for yrs….

        This is why fanatical religion can be so dangerous….when irrational remarks/baseless claims escalate into insults such as naming things as “donkeys’ only because such things are outside that religion.

        “Take advantsge while you can!”
        Isn’t that the name of the game in civil aerospace industry?

        Of course U take it. After all, Airbus itself sold heaps of 330Ceo circa 2007-2011(most of them with short notice) by taking advantage of its availability being far superior to 787(zero delivery until Sep2011) during that period.

        • Not replying to all of it, just BA. BA have bought the A350-1000 to replace the 747. They haven’t specified a replacement for their 777. IAG have bought the A350-900 for Iberia and Air Lingus.

          We will see what American Airlines do. They do have to make a decision because slots are running

          • BA still operates 43 B777-200ER’s and 12 B77W’s. They have 787-8&9’s with -10’s on order.

            They still operate 41 B747’s and 12 A380’s, but have 18 A35K’s on order.

            I can see further 35K requirements to replace some of the 747’s but the rest of the wide bodies could be anything?

          • … and 18 A350-1000 options. IAG do like to buy bit by bit, I’ll give you that! Bit by bit, may not be an option if A350 sales continue at the pace they are.

          • The 787-10’s makes sense to replace 777-200ER’s if its mostly Transatlantic, you don’t need range (unfortunate for the 359).

            I can’t actually think of many destinations where BA needs much more than 5500Nm range?

            Maybe 350K where capacity is required, 359 possibly of use where slightly more range is required and/or where destinations with hot and high airports are served.

            The 789 has it place in serving routes where less capacity is required.

          • The word on the street is saying that the 787-10 doesn’t match the A350 even on short sectors.

            Things have changed now the numbers are in. So let go back to the beginning. At the beginning, Airbus said that an A350 would need a MTOW of 290+ tonnes, 93K engines and auxiliary fuel tanks to fly 9700nm with payload restrictions. It’s now 9700nm with the standard A350-900, but renamed A350-900ULR, with payload restrictions.

            Time will tell, but all evidence suggests the A350 is significantly out-performing it specs. The Trent 1000 TEN will help the 787-10, and given that it is certified to 81000lbs, Boeing do have the option of increasing the MTOW. The wing will limit increases, for it small relative to the A350

          • As Transworld sometimes says it easy from the arm chair.

            If the performance figures of the 359 is that good why don’t they offer a model with weight trimmings were possible, de-rated engines (78Klb?), MTOW with full pax to give a range max range of ~7500Nm.

            Such a plane will surely knock the 789 on seat mile cost and 787-10 on sector cost.

            Isn’t this what airlines such as AA and BA really need as replacement for 777-200 (ER’s)?

            Don’t know which of the XWB84 and XWB97 (as the designs are different) will proof to be the best on fuel consumption and reliability/maintenance.

            I could see there is more use for an A350K with 90Klb engines with 7000Nm range than for and 8000+Nm aircraft.

            Australia have some “outlier” distances, but is it really a problem? If you want to go to US, fly to one of the Western destinations (6500Nm) and get connections.

            For the famous London/Europe routes, get 35K’s for Economy orientated pax, take freight, and re-fuel somewhere.

            And for the serious oaks (first/business/E+) get a couple of 359ULR’s and kit it out with ~150 seats, don’t take freight other than small parcels, fuel it up and fly, let these guys buck-up if they want the non-stop and comfort.

            ..but then there is a guy that get more money in a year that I hope to make in my entire life to sort out these things.

          • @anton

            Yes it is easy from the armchair. So back to where I started. Even if you sold your wife and kids, you can’t buy an A350. That isn’t going to change even when the FAL moves to 13/month.

            By the way, moving to 13/month is not pure speculation. GKN declared in composite world that they have ordered enough equipment to achieve 13/month. RR declared they will produce one Trent XWB a day by the end of the decade.

            But to return to the point: There is no point to either stretching or shrinking the A350. As it stands the A350 competes with the 787(-9/-10) and the 777(-8/-9)

            My crystal ball says that in 2020 we will still be talking about an eight year backlog for the A350, even with a FAL of 13/month.

            My crystal ball also says Airbus will do an A321/A330 replacement for as you say airports are getting very, very busy.

            By the way, I think United Airlines went for the A350 because of asian routes, both east/west and west/east. That’s were the growth is. In other words they needed the legs! American Airlines will buy the A350 for the same reason. Eighteen hour flights will become common. ME carriers will become toast!

          • Is the current turmoil at Ryanair a sign of pilot shortages coming as well?

            The current 9 year backlog with the A320/1’s is just not on.

            So if AB launches an A322 tomorrow with new wing etc…, you could potentially only get it in 10+ years from now.

            Think what the “airline world” need is a very fuel efficient 220-250 seat short-medium haul aircraft, typically flights 2-5 hours. Its those flights that fills the sky and airports.

            Maybe airports are to blame? How much effort went into accommodating the A380.

            (Busy) Airports should provide air bridges that could at least handle 2 doors from SA aircraft.

            Then OEM’s could build 220-240 seat single aisles with exit doors in the front and back and possibly just before the wing. Will have to make peace it will most likely be CAT-D.

            It will still remain the best seat mile cost option? The MC21 fuselage diameter much better for a bigger SA.

          • @anton

            Can’t disagree with a word you say with regard to the 180-250 market. I’ve always said that Boeing are on to something with the NMA. Equally, history shows Boeing have a wonderful history of innovation.

            But Boeing are subject to forces I don’t think understand. If I took a guess, it’s GE. GE don’t want to compete with RR. Yes they are currently winning on the 787, but every other winning position they have ended up losing.

            I don’t understand the 777X. When offered we were told it would be 12% better than the A350. My own numbers are 12% worse than the A350. Lets see what happens. My own view is that customers will dump the 777X when the real numbers are known.

            But then we come to the customers. How do you deal with the Middle East carriers? Bypass the Middle East. The A350 allows that! American Airlines will buy the A350 or lose the Asian market to United, Delta, Singapore, Cathay, Chinese, Philippines, Vietamnese and other airlines

          • @philip:
            “Not replying to all of it..”
            That’s convenient…

            “BA have bought the A350-1000 to replace the 747”
            A known fact since Sep2013 for myself when BA announced that order along with its purpose. Also an example to demonstrate my theory of the continuing widebody downgauge trend.

            “They haven’t specified a replacement for their 777”
            My theory is that they already hv for the oldest batch in their 777 fleet:
            772 x3, oldest frame 22yrs old today->78J x3
            772ER x9, youngest frame 20yrs old today->78J x9

            Today, all these 777s are likely deployed almost exclusively on LHR-Eastern U.S./Canada routes which are well within 78J payload/range. Think about it – There’re no other obvious targets for BA’s 78J order to replace other than their oldest 777s.

            For the remaining younger 772ERs, no replacement specified yet(And won’t be for a long while given the oldest BA 744 is already 27yrs old) but most likely will be 359 and/or 789. This depends on whether BA wants to stay same gauge or down-gauge(a la 744->35K by BA) but I think the most likely scenario for BA is a 359+789 combo because no diff in fleet support commonality advantages.

            “IAG have bought the A350-900 for Iberia
            Another example of the ongoing widebody downgauge trend this time going fm 346 to 359….similar to what LH fleet is already doing @ MUC base.

            Theoretically, IAG could hv chosen to replace 346 @ IB with 35K but they didn’t.

            “IAG have bought the A350-900 for….Air Lingus.”
            Actually, they didn’t. Aer Lingus bought the 359 for Aer Lingus 7yrs before IAG took over EI.

            “They do have to make a decision because slots are running…”
            Per recent statements by AA CEO/President re their ongoing reassessment of the 359 order, it has nothing to do with seeking more early 359 delivery slots. In fact, AA is seeking the opposite in order to reduce near-term CapEx – delaying 1st delivery till well beyond 2020….if the 359 order survive @ AA.

            I don’t know why many folks here keep pushing the impression that the U.S. Big3 are in a race to secure early 350 delivery slots….despite each CEO of the U.S. Big3 has been doing/seeking the opposite.

      • With the exception of the A380, there is no indication whatsoever that Airbus is having problems selling their aircraft. Indeed on future sales it is Airbus 55%/Boeing 45%. The A320 as a 9 year backlog. The A350 an 8 year backlog. The A330 a 5 year backlog

        Nothing to do with hero worship. Just facts.

        Good move from Boeing, they now have early delivery slots for the 787 whilst Airbus don’t have early delivery slots for the A350.

        Expect Airbus to respond by moving the A350 production rate to 13/month. The A320 production rate is already destined for 60/month. That could increase again

        With regard to the 787-9. Good airplane. Not an A350, but still the same, a good aircraft. The rest of the Boeing lineup: Well future orders make that one clear.

        NMA please to restore Boeing pride

        • Just to add to my own comment. Transworld did want an argument. So I gave him one.

          The OTP is the 787-9. It is Boeing’s Ace, but relative to the A350 it is more like a Queen.

          It is a good move by Boeing. If you need a car to go to work, then you must buy a car, even if it is second best. Boeing will make money on the 787

          As I said, NMA please to restore Boeing’s pride. But put RR engines on it for the FAA web-site says GE/PW engines don’t work whilst RR engines do!

          • @philip:
            “The OTP is the 787-9. It is Boeing’s Ace, but relative to the A350 it is more like a Queen.”
            No idea how this conclusion is drawn especially since U want to use facts:
            787 order book=Below 53% is for 789 in a 3 variants family
            350 order book=Over 75% is for 359 in a 3 variants family

            “If you need a car to go to work, then you must buy a car, even if it is second best.”
            Even better when it is not the 2nd best but is equally as good as the best…..2.3% narrower in max cabin width notwithstanding.

            “…FAA web-site says GE/PW engines don’t work…”
            Then why the hell are all those 77Ws/787s with GENx(e.g. UA’s & AA’s) and CSeries flying in the sky everyday including those fm my local airport with departure paths directly above my roof top?

            “…whilst RR engines do!”
            Is that why RR agreed with NH 1yr ago to replace all Trent1000s for their largest 787 fleet in the world? A huge exercise lasting 3yrs for 100 engines(RR currently can’t even deliver that quantity in 6mths for all Trent1000 customers) on 50 frames:

            May be FAA website doesn’t care what happen in Japan….

        • @philip:
          “…there is no indication whatsoever that Airbus is having problems selling their aircraft.”
          If no indication = indications given(some of them i hv not only presented earlier but also explained) but rejected/ignored…..then ok, pls feel free to continue to believe there’s no indication.

          In any case, the core point of all of my comments are not about X vendor has more problems than Y vendor in sales. It’s about an emerging problem or @ least a mkt trend affecting sales for all vendors:
          The most popular longhaul widebody size now shifting fm 350seats to 300seats

          “The A350 an 8 year backlog. The A330 a 5 year backlog.
          Nothing to do with hero worship. Just facts.”
          But has everything to do with Airbus’ ability to sell today. Hard to convince customers to wait roughly 8yrs(More like 6yrs by my own estimate) for a 350 or 5yrs for a 330Neo per your figures. Just facts as U say.

          The same problem was seriously affecting Boeing’s ability to sell 787 about 4-5yrs ago when 787 backlog piled up. Total backlog @ that time was equivalent to 8yrs production volume based on an ultimate production rate of 120/yr planned @ that time. As a result and if U recall, there was a slow sales period of a few yrs for 787…and some folks unfamiliar with this industry thought slow sales was all because of battery fire and early tech-teething issues….

          It’s not only facts but also how to interpret facts correctly in which the history of this industry is always a good guide.

          “Expect Airbus to respond by moving the A350 production rate to 13/month.”
          I expect Airbus concentrating on ramping up fm today’s 5.4/mth to their current planned ultimate target of 10/mth for the nex few yrs before I expect any other response by Airbus to go beyond 10/mth such as 13/mth.

          “With regard to the 787-9. Good airplane. Not an A350, but still the same, a good aircraft. The rest of the Boeing lineup: Well future orders make that one clear….NMA please to restore Boeing pride”
          With regard to the 359. Good airplane same as the 789. Not a 789, but still the same, a good aircraft. The rest of the Airbus lineup: Well future orders make that one clear.

          PW1100G & Trent7000 please behave to restore Airbus pride.

          • So you do accept that Boeings share of the market is falling. As stated 55/45 in favour of Airbus

            Interesting article from Bloomberg. Malaysia are still talking to Airbus about the A330neo. Only buying eight 787s when they need 25-30 widebodies was unusual. The 787 is available in 2019, the A350/A330 are not available

  15. I don’t understand how erosion of the -1000 for the -900 is good news for Boeing, on the contrary, it means that the smaller aircraft is closer to the sweet spot. If the -1000 might be too big , the 777x will be even bigger and heavier. For US carriers who did not purchase many -300ERs, the 777x seems less palatable than the smaller and lighter -1000.

    The real story about the -1000 will happen once the -300ER’s start becoming less and less economical and needing to be replacement. By then, the -1000 would be fine tuned and even more economical. The 777 x will still be bigger. That varaibke will not change.

    • Or you really need an aircraft that allows the up gauge from the 777-300 and the A350-1000 is not it.

      A380 is going away as is the Pax version of the 747.

      The 777-9 seems to be the logical succeso0rs with some market for the 8.

      Also bear in mind, Boeing will continue making the 777F and can still make a 300ER. those may have a popularity that has orders coming in past 2020.

      • Maybe both OEM’s got it wrong?

        For Airbus it should have been 350-900, followed by the -800 as head competition to the 787-9 and then the -1000. The A330NEO should have been an A330-200 on serious diet and 60Klb engines.

        In Boeing’s case the case 7it should have been the 777-8 followed by 777-9. The 787-10’s timing would have then been good as a medium haul option as back-up to the 777-8.

        Easy when you sit on the pavilion!

      • There are more 777-200’s that need to be replaced or upguaged than 777-300ER’s. Not all 777-300ER’s will need to be upgauged. That’s where the A350-1000 comes in.

        • @Jose:
          “There are more 777-200’s that need to be replaced…”
          This I understand & agree due to worldwide fleet age differential between 772/772ER vs 77W. They’re essentially 777s produced in 2 diff eras and almost all 772/772ERs hit the replacement cycle earlier than almost all 77Ws.

          “There are more 777-200’s that need to be….upguaged than 777-300ER’s”
          This I don’t understand why/how U claim such.

          If ‘up-sizing’ is the mkt trend, we should see some replacements for 772/772ER being larger(e.g. 35K) but also some replacements for 77W being larger(e.g. 779). If ‘down-sizing’, as I predicted, continues to be the trend, the reverse would hold true. Some 77Ws will be replaced by 359s while 772/772ER will be replaced by 789(Already happening @ UA, AA, NH, etc.).

          “Not all 777-300ER’s will need to be upgauged.”
          Agree. CX is an excellent example to show how this is done within the same 77W fleet. They clearly planned some 77Ws(mainly those in 4-class config where total seatcount is still a bit lower than ideal) will be replaced by 779(i.e. upgauge) while the remainder(mainly those in 3-class config where total seatcount is already ideal) will be replaced mostly by 35K(i.e. same gauge). The order split @ CX 779 vs 35K is now @ about 1:1.

          That’s why relatively few sales occurred for 779.

          “That’s where the A350-1000 comes in.”
          I thought no one will replace 77W with anything smaller than 35K.
          I don’t anymore per my recent observations re the downsizing trend among the longhaul majors.

          Some 77Ws will be replaced by 359, not 35K. Although not an exact analogy, LH has been replacing 346 fleet @ MUC hub with the significantly smaller 359. 346 debuted a few yrs earlier than 77W but they’re practically identical in size.

          • Terribly selective FLX, you had some interesting stuff to say but the B777x is a winner and the A350-1000 a loser is now wearing a bit thin. Do you really suppose that the A350-1000 has no place. Based upon your earlier posts regarding the lack of CASm benefit of the A350-1000 vs its smaller sibling then the exact same could be said of that frame in relation to the B779. To my mind you are becoming slightly rabid now

  16. A350-1000 is 10 percent smaller than 300er. The 777x is 10 abbrest and 2 to 3 rows longer than the 300 Eric. That is why the premium airline like it better than the -1000.

    • The 350-1000 and 777-300(ER) basically the same length.

      Boeing squeeze in an extra seat in the 773 that is just 8″ wider than the 350. An 777-300 at 3-4-3 is actually a worse experience than a 787 at 3-3-3.

  17. Lots of noise about long planned new new (small) boeing factory in the UK=shut up Mrs May. Extreme arrogance from Boeing.
    While I am at it, the state department really should think about the wording of FMS. It doesn’t sound good at all when an NATO member announces that it’s going to greatly enrich the US by purchasing American weapons and months later publicly receives permission from the US to buy them.

  18. With all respect, looking at the interview photo of AA CEO a fleet decision had been made. (I served on a number of boards and I know that look from an CEO).

    Maybe one of the reasons Boeing is confident about increasing 787 production?

    Then there is still Delta’s review of their 330NEO and 350 orders, as well as anticipated new single aisle order/s.

    Delta’s CEO and board could be under big pressure from Mr.T. for being “bad boys” with CS100 order.

    Can see Delta using A359’s to replace 777-200ER/LR’s.

    But sorting out replacing a fleet of 767’s with A339’s does not make sense to me. Delta sill operates a very big fleet of 757 of various types.

    Only time will tell.

    • But the same was said of United Airlines and Delta Airlines. It’s not over until the fat lady sings. My guess is that American Airlines will keep the A350. But Airbus must provide them on time: By 2022 American Airlines oldest 777s will be 25 years old

      • My predictions were wrong with United, right with Malaysia. The AA one is interesting, no American airline has gone 77X yet, the 777-8 could fit their requirements as is an A350-900/1000 combo. 22 Aircraft not a big train smash if it goes pear shape in the short term.

        Glad I am not the Delta CEO, his got major fleet decisions to make. If an “797” was available it would have been a no brainer.

        To be honest I would have taken 787-9’s over the 339 due to range flexibilities, the 350 will stay.

        The 200-250 seat class aircraft with 4000-6000Nm range is a major problem for airlines.

        • Think in 10 years from now airlines ordering 150-200 seat aircraft will go to 200-250 due to airport and air space traffic as well as higher fuel prices.

          Boeing is on the right track with the MoM, they have the 787-9. Don’t worry about 260+, focus on a 220-240 seat aircraft.

        • But Malaysia has ordered 8 with a requirement of 25 widebodies. Delivery starts in 2019. Airbus can’t deliver to that timescale, not even with the A330neo. They are taking 6 A350s on lease

          With regard to the A330neo. The situation with the Trent 7000 is more severe than some think. It will take until this time next year to certify the Trent 7000, but that is without ETOPs. Add unother years to get ETOPs

          The same applies to the Trent XWB-97. It has been certified without ETOPs. Add another year. So autumn next year

          • Thanks for the info about the XWB97, Qatar will not be impressed.

            The 330 is my favorite but with the NEO they messed it up. The Trent7000 is a weight and price dog.

          • The Trent 1000/7000 puts the GE GENX in the shade. The Trent XWB is far better than many want to admit or will admit!

          • @anton

            As I had to point out to somebody rlse. The GENX has 8 current ADs as identified on the FAA web-site, the Trent 1000 has 3, one of which is a software upgrade to the FADEC.

            To give an example. There is an AD for HPT on the Trent 1000. The blades are showing cracks. Serious, yes. But there is also an AD for HPT on the GENX. The blades broke off. Serious, I think we can say yes

            I always find it interesting when told RR isn’t reliable. All you need to do is go on the FAA web-site and take a look at the ADs for the GE90. Far, far worse than GENX, but GENX is catching up

            But its the Trent 1000 TEN I’m interested in. It is the baby brother of the Trent XWB. The Trent XWB is next generation technology relative to the original Trent 1000. GE can’t compete!

          • Thanks, really appreciate the info. It just seems that in the aircraft business its many times cart before the horses?

            Its appears that Boeing is doing better job with this than AB, the 777X an example. Don’t think we will see a 777-9 standing in the sun and being towed around without engines for more than 9 months after it came out of the paint shop like the 339?

            T0 be honest again, if I was AirAsiaX I will go to Boeing and say I will buy 50 B787-9’s if the price covers the cancellations costs, and order it wit GE’s! This will sill leave you with money in the bank to buy 787-10’s to phase out the 22 older A330-300’s.

            This to replace 66 A339 and 10 A359 orders.

          • Thanks, really appreciate the info. It just seems that in the aircraft business its many times cart before the horses?

            Its appears that Boeing is doing better job with this than AB, the 777X an example. Don’t think we will see a 777-9 standing in the sun and being towed around without engines for more than 9 months after it came out of the paint shop like the 339?

            T0 be honest again, if I was AirAsiaX I will go to Boeing and say I will buy 50 B787-9’s if the price covers the cancellations costs, and order it wit GE’s! This will still leave you with money in the bank to buy 787-10’s to phase out the 22 older A330-300’s with time.

            This to replace 66 A339 and 10 A359 orders.

          • @anton

            I’ve got to reply.

            The GENX hasn’t flown on the 787-10. But then there isn’t a 78,000lbs as yet. It running out of buff at 75000lbs. With the GENX issues we will have to see whether the throttle push to 78000lbs will take it over the top.

            The Trent 1000 TEN has been certified to 81000lbs and has ETOPs. Emirates will need the power if it is going to buy the 787. But to return to the point, the 787-10 would be without engines if it was left to GE. Remember RR was first on all 787 variants.

            The 777X. Lets see. The GE9X doesn’t look as though it is any better than the Trent XWB; the TRENT XWB is already 11-12% better than the GE90. I also think the GE9X will be late; the development timescales are too tight. All in all the performance numbers don’t add up, but then not all the numbers have been released.

            I don’t think AirAsiaX will follow your suggestion even if the 787 is as cheap as you suggested. MAS will buy RR for it limited buy of 787s, it will then buy A330neos and in the end A350s

          • Thanks again, don’t like the idea of a 81Klb TEN for the 787 from an AB perspective.

            With wing and undercarriage modifications the 787-9 could go ultra long range (QF) and the 787-10 could go to higher MTOW putting a wedge between 359 and 350-1000.

            An 81Klb T7000 will do nothing for the 330NEO.

            …but something just for us love flying, video of 737-200 taking. Plane actually looks in good nick, think Transworld will appreciate this, can smell the paraffin.

          • U right, I am just throwing stones in the bush and see what flies up.

            The CAC919 and MC21 will take a chunk out of the most lucrative 150-200 seat market in the East.

            The future for Western OEM’s could be the 200-250 seat market in 10 years from now. But the engine guys will have to come up with something very special between 35 and 45Klb.

          • @anton

            Its not about being right. It is interesting that there is no GENX on the 787-10. It’s a no show! Wonder why!

          • Philip:

            RR had to build a whole new engine for the 787 as they could not overcome the fuel burn defifi8cinei with the original design.

            They also had to replace all the blades on the ANA fleet.

            ANA as usual was low key and did not make a fuss.

            GE on the other hand is upgrading the GenX for the -10 using the original design. They also have an up thrust version for the ME if that ever happens.

            They can’t get the A330NEO into the air due to engine problem and they are having engine problems with the magical uber efficient A380 engine that suddenly magically was better the GP engine that had better fuel burn, better maint costs and was reliable.

            To put it mildly I would not say RR was on a roll.

          • Transworld, the reason for the Trent 1000-TEN being a newer design than RR’s earlier 787 engines is because its derived from the newer Trent XWB !
            The original Trent K first flew around 10 years ago and technology moves along relentlessly.

          • @TransWorld

            RR did not have to build an whole new engine to meet fuel burn targets. That is wishful thinking. They built the Trent 1000 TEN to exceed fuel burn targets. Even Boeing have admitted the performance of the Trent 1000 TEN. RR also gave the Trent 1000 TEN legs, thereby as stated by @Anton, opening up all sorts of possibilities for the 787-10 e.g a 500-600nm hike in range by increasing MTOW and adding fuel

            Returning to wishful thinking. GE say the GE9X will be 10% better than the GE90 and 5% better than any other widebody engine. Wishful thinking for it assumes the Trent XWB/Trent 1000 TEN are no better than the GENX. GENX is 5-6% better than the GE90

            The Trent XWB is 11-12% better than the GE90. The Trent 1000 TEN 8-9% better than the GE90. GE always downgrade RR for marketing. The Trent 1000 Package C and GENX PIP2 are comparable

            It will be interesting to see when the 78000Ibs version of the GENX will make a show. Already pretty late in the day for the 787-10 is not far off certification with the Trent. A look at the FAA ADs for the GENX gives insight

          • “The GENX hasn’t flown on the 787-10.”
            “But to return to the point, the 787-10 would be without engines if it was left to GE.”
            “It is interesting that there is no GENX on the 787-10. It’s a no show! Wonder why!”
            “It will be interesting to see when the 78000Ibs version of the GENX will make a show. Already pretty late in the day for the 787-10 is not far off certification with the Trent.”

            What are you talking about!?? The 787-10 test aircraft (ZC036/N548ZC) fitted with GEnx-1B’s has been flying since May 2 and has accumulated 178 flight hours so far. It flew for the first time only 1 month after the first 787-10 test frame equipped with Trent 1000’s. These fact are pretty easily found.
            Also, where are you getting 78,000 lb thrust? All the articles I’ve seen talk about a 76,000 lb thrust GEnx for the -10.

          • @Mike Bonhet

            Yep, the 78000Ib version of the GENX is to be no more, and I’m going to be told it was never offered!

          • @Mike Bonhet

            I did check my facts. Just wondered when the RR/Airbus trashers were going to check their, especially with reliability and performance

            With regard to GENX. Lets see what the future holds, for the Trent 1000 TEN is available while GENX appears to have run out of legs. We will see!

          • Has GE taken their eye off the ball (GENX) and got caught up with the development of the GE9X?

        • @Anton:
          “no American airline has gone 77X yet”
          My prediction is that none of the U.S. Big3 will ever buy 779(And without the possibility of 779, 778 alone won’t make econ scale sense for these really big guys) thx to their dispersed hub networks and as a result, decentralization of their longhaul connecting traffic.

          “the 777-8 could fit their requirements as is an A350-900/1000 combo.”
          778 is a niche animal very diff fm the 359 and 35K so cannot possibly fit the same requirements. 778 is essentially 35K sized with 359ULR performance both in 1 single package. If Airbus ever launch a 350-1000ULR(A very costly+time consuming exercise) like some folks speculated, it’ll look & function very much like a 778.

          Of course there’s no free lunch and there’s a fuel burn penalty when combing true ULR performance(18hrs sector & beyond) and 350seats nominal.

          “Glad I am not the Delta CEO…If an “797” was available it would have been a no brainer.”
          A brand new type with a not-yet-seen skeleton of a supply chain occupying a mkt segment space no one dare to develop anything for since 310/762 is a “no brainer” for a stock price-sensitive airline CEO to bet on? U’ve got to be joking….and we’ve not even started on the engineering topic re this funny/unprecedented oval shape fuselage cross-section….

          “I would have taken 787-9’s over the 339 due to range flexibilities”
          And that’s why neither U nor me is DL CEO with DL stockholders breathing down his neck scrutinizing every CapEx decision made by DL.

          Even if we ignore negotiated contract price for 789 would be far higher than 339 and longterm commonality savings due to DL 330Ceo fleet(42 frames in service) would be lost, there’re just too many longhaul routes in DL current network where 339 is already sufficiently capable. 2 examples:
          1. Trans-Pcf
          Can reach all destinations in Japan(may be even ICN) @ full payload fm SEA hub and @ full pax fm LAX hub.
          2. Trans-Atl
          Can reach every DL hub except LAX @ full payload fm anywhere in EU.

          “…200-250 seat class aircraft with 4000-6000Nm range is a major problem for airlines.”
          A major problem for Boeing – yes. A major problem for airlines – far less so…..especially when the low end of these 2 targets are already reachable more or less thru the 321LR solution.

          Whether enough airlines like that solution for the problem is a diff topic…

          • Firstly the 779 market is possibly more as a replacement for 747’s and A380’s and less as a 77W growth, most seems to be down sizing wide body capacity

            For Emirates is probably a requirement of something in size between the 77W and A380 (as is for Singapore, etc?).

            Technically it is true that US airlines are/were not big operators of 77W’ s and potential also not for 779’s.

            But a combination of Mr Trump, Boeing and “America first” could overrule some technical decisions?

            Maybe something along the lines, “if you don’t buy the 77X the program could die and X-number of jobs lost”, etc….

            The poor little CS100 is then threatening Boeing’s future?!

            For AA and A359 (and 35K combo) maybe is the logic/correct decision, but there could also be a “shocker” of say a 40+ B777-8 order to in part replace the 772’s and phase out older 77W’s with a combination of 777-8’s and 789’s. Cancellations cost could be high, wonder if you can get a Tax break on that for example?

            ….and on DL, they are very tight with capital, one of the oldest fleets around.

            ….and on the MoM/NMA, I see its biggest application on high density <2500NM routes where you require fast turnarounds on the ground, US and Asia, but could also fly 5000NM if required.

          • @anton

            If the numbers reported by FlightGlobal are right, then an A350-1000ULR to match the 8700nm range of the 777-8 will be very easy. The A350-1000 as justed started route proving. My guess is that it won’t be payload restricted. We will know soon enough.

            Also expect an A350-900ULR with a range of 8700nm without payload restrictions. The reason is Airbus have now said the A350-900ULR will fly 9700nm but with payload restrictions. It may need a slight bump in the Trent XWB-84 engines, but not the -97 engine to accommodate a slight increase in MTOW

          • Thanks. You somewhere mention the 35K will initially not be ETOPs rated.

            Wheres the hold up, the XWB97’s or something else?

          • @anton. It’s a long story. RR messed up on the Trent 1000 TEN fan stator material. They tried a cheaper material and it backfired. That put the Trent 1000 TEN back a year. That sent the Trent XWB-97 backwards, and as you know it also sent the Trent 7000 backwards. No problem getting ETOPs, but they do have to do it. Typically it arrives a year after initial certification. So middle of next year

      • The best replacement of the 777-200ER is the A350-900. Going to a 787-9, would be going backwards in capacity. The 787 would be better suited as replacement of their 767’s and A330’s.
        My guess is that AA will take even more A350’s.

        • Hope so, but there could hard talk about delivery slots?

          United and Delta is taking 350’s, think AA realize they have to compete with them.

          • @Anton:
            “but there could hard talk about delivery slots?”
            No “hard talk” will be needed between Airbus and U.S. Big3 re 350 delivery slots as 2 of them don’t want any early deliveries at all.

            Rationally speaking, lack of 350 delivery slots due to cabin issues+natural production ramp up curve will be a near-term phenomenon which I expect(based on histories for other new widebody programs such as 787) will only last 2 more yrs maximum…that’s more than enough time to completely ditch Zodiac as part of the 350 cabin supply chain if desired.

            The 350 FAL has delivered 43frames Jan-Aug this yr and I project 2017 full yr deliveries will be @ or above 65. By 2020 or 5yrs after 1st delivery, I firmly believe the 350 FAL will be delivering 120 frames/yr as per the planned ultimate rate still targeted by Airbus.

            As of today, there’re fewer than 760 frames in the 350 backlog including the recent 10 additions by UA. That’s equivalent to 6-6.5yrs total output @ the ultimate delivery rate. Although I don’t expect 120 deliveries per yr until 2020, typically a significant share within current backlog is also not scheduled for delivery until after 2023-24(i.e. also 6~6.5yrs fm now). As a result, I’m guessing a significant number of vacant 350 delivery slots will open up fm 2022 onward.

            Per latest plans+indications fm the U.S. Big3, all of them are delaying 350 deliveries to certain extent:
            DL plan=
            25 ordered. 1 delivered. 14 to arrive by around 2019. Last 10 deliveries delayed recently(Not Airbus initiated/requested) and won’t START to join DL fleet until around 2022.

            UA plan=
            45 ordered. All deliveries delayed by UA(Not Airbus initiated/requested) recently and won’t START to join UA fleet until late 2022. Last delivery scheduled for 2027….an avg of only 9 slots to be taken by UA per yr fm totally 120 frames to be produced per yr by 2022.

            AA plan=
            22 ordered. 1st delivery scheduled for nex yr but the entire order is now under review to select an alternative among several options(Status quo is not among those options). Even in the best case option where AA keep the 359 order(likely along with an increase in quantity), I’m 99% certain AA will seek to delay 1st delivery which most likely will be 2023 or later when AA’s oldest 772ER will hit retirement age range.

            “United and Delta is taking 350’s”
            They are but neither wants 350 delivered quickly. For the nex 5yrs, DL will remain as the only U.S. carrier operating 350 and with only 15 frames per current UA & DL fleet plans and per AA intention.

            “..think AA realize they have to compete with them.”
            I believe AA realized they hv to compete with DL & UA since well before WWII more than 80yrs ago.

            Competing with or without 359 does not change that reality nor alter AA’s ability & effectiveness to compete……especially when AA fleet already has a type delivering very similar op econ+performance as the 359.

            And remember, that competition is not about who operates a particular type that is pleasing the most pax or readers(May be that was the case 40yrs ago before mkt de-reg/openskies everywhere). AA has to compete with DL & UA basically in pleasing stockholders /Wall Street.

          • Maybe by the time they get these aircraft they realize they should have gone for 35K’s?

            But I also think that AA and United is keeping the backdoor open for 777-9’s by not taking 35K’s?

          • @FLX

            You do need to check your facts. Airbus is on record as wanting to deliver 75-80 this year and an 110 next year (10/month).

            Airbus have an 11 month year. So 10/month means 110/year (current plan), 13/month means 143/year (hopefully future plan

            You need to go back to an article provided by LNC. It showed a chart of yearly deliveries for the A350. It didn’t include the extre 10 for UA, the Vietnamese agreement but no contract for 10 and the Chinese agreement but no contract for 40

            If the Vietnamese/Chinese agreements become contracts (they will), then the order book will become 908, and book to bill ratio this year of about 1.4

            That’s before more orders year, remembering that Airbus usually do a lot of business in the final quarter. Add it all up, A350 slot availability is 2025, unless production is increased.

            Face reality, Airbus do not have a problem selling their airplanes

        • @Jose:
          “The best replacement of the 777-200ER is the A350-900.”
          U’re confusing “The best” with “The most similar seatcount”. They are not the same concept.

          “Going to a 787-9, would be going backwards in capacity.”
          And what exactly is the problem with that?

          A decade ago, countless airlines hv gone backward in seat count moving fm 744 to 77W instead of ‘going forward’ with 380. Today, even UA & CX are “going backwards in capacity” for 350 by swapping 35K with 359.

          • AA doesn’t operate “ultra range” routes (772ER range just over 7000Nm).

            Apparently there will be an OEW drop for the 359 as from next year, as well as engine improvements. AA could opt for the lightest version that will still have a range well within their requirements.

  19. I’m still interested in why so many think the 14/month production hike isn’t suspainable. All forecasts show beteen 7500 to 9500 widebody deliveries over the next 20 years. Lets do some simple sums using 8000 widebody deliveries over the next 20 years. That is 400/year:


    787@14/month. Rounding, 160/year. 3200 over 20 years
    777@5/month. Rounding, that is 60/year. 1200 over 20 years

    The forecasts say the second number is too big, so unlikely. But anyway, that is 220/year, leaving Airbus 180/year


    A350@10/month. Rounding that is 110/year. 2200 over 20 years
    A330@5/month. Rounding that is 60/year. 1200 over 20 years
    A380@2/month. Rounding that is 20/year. 400 over 20 years

    The forecasts say the second and third numbers are too big, so unlikely. But anyway that is 190/year

    I don’t think 14/month for the 787 and 13/month for the A350 is unreasonable given the forecasts!

    • Its called a bubble. The would has not tripled in air use in the last 10 years.

      You can see the story in the 777. Up to rate almost 10 a month, now down to 5?

      Rate 8 looks sustainable for the 787, not 14.

      The A330NEO I don’t know but have not see orders for it since the initial fill and Air Asia is seriously suspect (Delta is solid)

      A350? Long term rate 6.

        • A 240+ seat MoM will take sales away from the 787-8/9 that could impact on required production rates.

          Boeing seems to have lost interest int he 787-8 due to apparently not having great commonality with the 787-9 (which I don’t understand) but >90% commonality with the 797-10 components.

          See the 787-8’s OEW weight is ~10T less than that of the 789. What will the OEW then be of a “simple shrink” of the 789 to the 788 length be with the same components.

          788 OEW per seat is ~50okgs while that of the 789 is 445kg’s.

          And the “overweight A330-800” (estimated OEW of ~124T) is ~480kgs/per seat. Not that bad!

          So an A330-200 with new wing, wingbox, center section with around 260 seat will fit in nicely between the 788 (242 seats) and 789 (290 seats).

          • My favorite airplane is the 767. I worked for McDonnell Douglas for 10 years, St Louis not California. I was flying into St Louis every other week. I was a CAD geek!

            I think Boeing have something. Point to point or city pairs are the future. This will need a true 767 replacement and it will need to be good. Boeing will need to go all out with CFRP and whilst I know many will argue, there will have to be an RR option, Advance or Ultrafan – GE and PW don’t match RR

            The market will be both short haul and long haul. Sales of 4000+ I think do exist. If it happens, it will significantly dent 787 and A350 sales.

            The problem. Boeing are not competing with the 737. So they may go for a NSA. I think they need to do both a NSA and NMA. Same technology, just diferent sizes: F18 Hornet and Super Hornet

          • I haven’t flown in the 767 many times (maybe x 10) and lights never more than 7 hours, but was always good.

            Just wondering at what time the skies and airports will start getting to crowded?

            My personal view is that today’s 180 seaters will need to be a 240 seater in 10 years.

          • @anton: I think we agree. The NMA is both short haul and long haul.

            In short haul mode is will kill the A321neo, or at least contest the A321neo airspace. Many haven’t noticed, but over 40% of recent A320 orders are for the A321, and increasing. So what you suggest is already happening. Short haul is upgauging

          • The fuselage width could be interesting, think we are going to see 17.5″ seats. People are now conditioned. The fuselage shape also likely to be a-symmetric.

            Would love a 2-3-2 but a 2-4-2 will be better for a 250+ seat aircraft.

            If AB goes for the 322 with new wing hope they will also do a 320Plus with same wing. That could rattle the cage with medium haul LCC’s, such an aircraft (320Plus) will have ~20 more seats than the 320 and could have a range of 4500-4800Nm?

            Boeing won’t match that without an NSA.

  20. The 777 is 11 inches wider than the A350 internally. Boeing crease beam to outside diameter is always narrower than Airbus. The 777x is 15 inches wider internally than the A350xwb. The A350 was design as 17.5 ” from the launch and only achieved 18″ by going to 1.5″ arm rest. It is the only Airbus aircraft with 1.5″ armrest. 787 is 17.2″ and A350 is 17.5″. Check the spec when they were launch.

    • There are always noises with especially deplaning of large single aisles such as the 321 and 757’s.

      Juts a thought, an 777-9 (400 pax) will have the same number of pax per aisle.

  21. Could a low priced/(“cheap”) MoM/Nma with a range of 5000Nm, that’s affordable to LCC’s, not potentially badly hurt Legacy airlines on the Transatlantic routes and threaten European Airlines on routes to the East (India and China).

    The only routes that will be relatively safe to Legacy airlines are from Asia the the US.

    Change the range to 6000Nm miles and its a different ball game, Eastern Asia will be in reach of the US West coast for LCC’s

    So a “797” could become the 787’s worst enemy, so will we see the MoM?

    • @Anton:
      “Could a low priced/(“cheap”) MoM/Nma with a range of 5000Nm, that’s affordable to LCC’s, not potentially badly hurt Legacy airlines on the Transatlantic routes and threaten European Airlines on routes to the East..”
      LCCs going longhaul, with or without any “affordable” MoM/797 weapons, are already hurting and will continue to hurt FSCs in Trans-Alt and Europe-Asia mkts. This is especially true when the finances+profitability+capital access of those LCCs which hv gone longhaul hv already been consistently out-shining many so-called “Legacy” “European Airlines”(e.g. SAS, AZ, AirBerlin, Austrian, etc., and even mighty AF) for yrs rendering the issue of MoM/797 affordability irrelevant.

      “..only routes that will be relatively safe to Legacy airlines are from Asia the the US.”
      Of course Scoot & AirAsiaX, with their rapid Trans-Pcf growth plans, profitability and deep pockets, are just mickey mouse on the Japan-U.S. routes they are already flying on. Even that new wave of Chinese longhaul LCCs(e.g. Ruili Air has just ordered the 789), all armed with powerful Chinese capital backings, scheduled to join the Trans-Pcf party in the near future will be no threat.

      The FSCs in Asia have nothing to worry about….

      “Change the range to 6000Nm miles and its a different ball game, Eastern Asia will be in reach of the US West coast for LCC’s.”
      1st of all, in typical high density longhaul LCC cabin set-up, U immediately lose @ least 10%(realistically more like 15%) range fm that nominal 6,000nm figure. 2ndly, you lose another 10% fm nominal simply due to those strong winter headwinds over the N.Pacific + traffic congestion/detour allowance. Finally, the 4,800nm effective range U ended up with @ best is only good for routes between the Pacific N.W. region of N.America(e.g. YVR, SEA) and Japan(may be Korea too if the Russian Pacific air defense zone cooperate). In contrast, lower cabin density on FSCs will hv a lot more than 4,800nm effective range to play with fm a nominally 6,000nm airplane…PVG, PEK become reachable fm SEA.

      MoM/797 with 6,000nm nominal range will hardly present a diff ball game for LCCs over the Pacific. However, it’ll be for FSCs to certain extent.

      “…a “797” could become the 787’s worst enemy..”
      Only under 2 specific /narrow scenarios over the Pacific:
      a) U absolutely never ever will need range beyond 6,000nm=
      A 78J(i.e. the lowest performance 787) still flies 7% further and there’s no way a 797 can ever be developed to conquer 8,100nm endurance like UA’s 789 has been doing everyday on SFO->SIN.
      b) U don’t care about Rev$ cargo potential in the belly=
      Even if we ignore the significantly more payload lift fm even a lowly 788 over the highest performance 797 variant, that funny 797 fuselage cross-section is not LD3 friendly at all. Unfortunately, Trans-Pcf cargo mkt remains as the most busy+profitable in the world.

      • What I tried to say is if the MoM is US$100M less than a 789 you could see more LCC’s going longer haul.

        You don’t need the 78J’s range, just something getting over the Pacific.

  22. As I noted a number of times, the 787 keep selling. Not always huge but selling.

    Turkish just announced an order for 40 787-9

    Not bad in a widebody slump!

    • Don’t be mistaken the 787-9 is a great aircraft from an airlines point but its success also a result of Airbus trying a quick fix with the 330NEO.

      Now they want to push its MTOW to 251T, great, but now they confusing customers between the 359 and 339, result, get the 789, an all rounder.

      Wonder if airlines that ordered the 339 could choose again what it will be?

    • Yep, but Turkish Airlines also want 40 A350s. Its another Garuda, they wanted 30 of each, but bought 14 A330neos for now

      • Airbus went for an A330NEO, I guess mainly due its relatively low cost to develop and envisaged A350 production rate shortfalls and capacity on the 330 line.

        Now its backfiring. If you were an airline and Boeing comes to you with the 787-9 at US$25m less (list price) than an A330-900, and you could potentially get the 789 before the 339, then they also tell you the 339 is an old outdated design that burns >10% fuel per seat mile what will you do?

        The 787 increased production rate is going to hurt the 339 more than the 359 because airlines still want the 359 for its capabilities.

        “Big” replacements of A330’s needs to start deliveries around 2025.

        Airbus still has a window of opportunity to develop an A350 sub-type what I call an A350-“500”. ~275 Seats, new wing, centre section, wing box, significantly lighter than the 359, effective (real) range ~6000Nm (7000Nm “paper range”), ~70 KLb Ultra fans. This will be an A330 replacement that airlines want.

        Many airlines are using 789’s for routes <4000Nm and and A333's for <2000Nm. It will cost significant money to develop the 350-500 but then AB could have an aircraft that outguns the 787-9 by significant margins and be serious competition to the larger of the planned MoM's. Market could be well beyond 1000 aircraft.

        It will easily do all Transatlantic routes. India, most routes from Central Asia, Far East and China to Europe, most Transpacific routes from China and Far East to the US (which the MoM wont be able to do), all destinations between North and South America, all destinations between Australia and India/Asia/China, (Taiwan-Vancouver, Ankara-Florida, 5300Nm are other examples), etc.

        This could also become the aircraft of choice in 10 years time for long haul LCC's where Norweigan, Scoot for example are now buying 787's?

        For me a no-brainer. Think Delta for example would like an aircraft like this? From a marketing point, if AB put plans for such an aircraft on the table it could slow down 789 sales, on the negative it could kill the 339.

        But its better for AB to sell 500 A350-500's than 100 A339's and keep on losing sales to the 789.

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