Maintenance cost, availability are growing concerns for OEMs, airlines

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By Judson Rollins

November 7, 2023, © Leeham News: Maintenance costs and lead times have been a growing topic in aviation circles and financial markets since last month’s Aviation Week MRO Europe conference in Amsterdam.

Wage and commodity inflation have been widely identified as key cost drivers in many regions. However, this has been compounded by ongoing part shortages, deferred maintenance from aircraft flown less than normal in 2020-2022, and the retention of older aircraft to maintain capacity in the face of new-generation engine reliability issues and resulting groundings.

Even the Financial Times recently covered the impact of MRO constraints. Consultant Kevin Michaels of AeroDynamic Advisory told the FT that airline maintenance spending had ballooned from a historic 8%-10% of airline costs to an estimated 14% this year.

Source: Aviation Week.

  • Aircraft availability limits options for carriers, spares providers.
  • Spares availability further limited by commodity shortfalls.
  • Labor constraints evolve from headcount to experience and productivity.
  • Sustainability panel long on possibilities, short on deliverables.

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