By Bjorn Fehrm
August 15, 2019, ©. Leeham News: Airbus is increasing the Gross Weight of its A220 variants by 5,000lb from 2H2020. It is to increase the already long range of the aircraft according to Airbus.
We looked at the typical trans-Atlantic routes this longer-range capability enabled last week. Now we explore further route areas and compare the A220 economics to the Boeing 737-8 and Airbus A321LR.
August 9, 2019, ©. Leeham News: In our series about classical flight controls (“fly by steel wire”) and Fly-By-Wire (FBW or “fly by electrical wire”), we this week turn to the actual Flight control system after covering the infrastructure needs last week. We could see the FBW required a higher redundancy Hydraulic and Electrical infrastructure. Why we will come to.
Now we look at the control principles for classical control systems like the Boeing 737 system and FBW system like the Airbus A320 system.
Aug. 5, 2019, © Leeham News: Airbus last week won a big, validating commitment from Air France-KLM Group for 60 orders and more options for the A220-300.
The contract won’t be firm until later this year, but the AF Memorandum of Understanding (when converted) brings the A220 order book to 611. There are some other commitments that haven’t yet been converted to orders.
Through mid-July, there were 86 A220s in service. There were 465 Letters of Intent, MOUs and Options before the Air France deal was announced.
But of those firm orders, 110 of them aren’t so firm. In fact, some of them really shouldn’t even be on the books.
July 29, 2019, Leeham News: Despite threats and fears of cancellations for the Boeing 737 MAX following two fatal accidents of virtually brand new -8 MAXes, few order cancellations directly attributable to the crashes have occurred.
So far, there isn’t a discernible shift to Airbus, either, data shows.
July 22, 2019, © Leeham News: Embraer still appears to be in a bit of a holding pattern following the Paris Air Show in which it announced orders and commitments for only 76 EJets. Two additional orders announced at the show were previously under the Unidentified category.
This seems to be following a pattern set with the Bombardier C Series, in which sales were slow while the market waited for the deal to close in which Airbus acquired 50.01% of the C Series program.
June 25, 2019, © Leeham News: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Bombardier today announced an agreement in which MHI will acquire the CRJ program, subject to customary shareholder and regulatory approvals. Closing is expected in the second half of next year.
The CRJ program includes the airplane, the global product support and sales force, manufacturing facilities and other assets. A CRJ installed customer base of 1,300 airplanes and more than 130 operators worldwide.
“Bombardier will continue to supply components and spare parts and will assemble the current CRJ backlog on behalf of MHI. CRJ production is expected to conclude in the first half of 2020, following the delivery of the current backlog of aircraft,” the companies said in a statement.
June 24, 2019, © Leeham News: Heard around the Paris Air Show last week:
Reporters long used to the entertaining and sometimes acerbic tongue former super-salesman John Leahy wondered how Christian Scherer would compare.
Scherer’s own sharp tongue began to emerge at the Airbus Innovation Days pre-air show briefing last month and got sharper at the executive round table the Friday before and on Day 1 of the international event.
On Day 2, Boeing and International Airlines Group (British Airways, et al) stunned the world journalists and Airbus with the LOI for 200 737 MAXes. On Thursday, Scherer expressed his displeasure.
The deal wasn’t unprecedented. In the 1990s, Boeing blindsided Leahy with an exclusive deal with American Airlines, followed by Delta and Continental airlines. “I was…pissed,” Leahy told LNA years later.
It seems Scherer is following in Leahy’s shoes in more ways than one.
The launch of the A321XLR was totally expected. The top question: does this kill the Boeing NMA? (LNA’s answer: Nope.)
By Judson Rollins
June 17, 2019, © Leeham News, Paris: Senior executives from Mitsubishi Aircraft Company (MITAC) and parent Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) described the long journey to the revamped “SpaceJet” M90 and M100 aircraft. They also commented on what market role the SpaceJet could potentially fulfil, as well as potential incremental improvements to the aircraft.
MHI chairman Shunichi Miyanaga said that market conditions and competitive landscape have changed in the company’s favor as the need for regional jet replacement has grown and competition has dwindled down to just a single player, Embraer.
June 13, 2019, © Leeham News: Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp. (MITAC)’s redesign of the MRJ70 and launch of the M100 SpaceJet in its place reflects a changing market environment when the MRJ program was launched more than a decade ago.
Then, MITAC—and Embraer—thought the restrictive US Scope Clause with the pilots’ unions of US major carriers would be relaxed by now.
MITAC launched the MRJ90 90-seat aircraft, to be followed by the MRJ70, a 70-seat airplane. Embraer launched the E175-E2 re-engined model of the popular E175.
Neither complied with Scope as then defined, specifically the maximum takeoff weight of 86,000 lbs. Each exceeded this limit by about a ton.
(There are restrictions as to the number of seats and number of airplanes that can be operated by regional airline partners, too, but it’s the weight limit that’s the key issue here.)
By Bryan Corliss
June 11, 2019, © Leeham News: © — A deal by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to acquire the CRJ program from Bombardier would make abundant sense for Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp – taking a struggling competitor off the board, acquiring hard-to-find human capital assets, and taking over an established North American American supplier network and a global product support system.
And recent unconfirmed reports that MITAC also is considering a North American final assembly site would make a lot of sense for a company that’s looking to cut production costs – and get closer to some likely key customers.
Yet while everyone in the industry is talking about the potential links between MITAC and the Montreal-based CRJ, nobody’s saying much about the company’s future in Moses Lake (WA). But overlooking Mitsubishi’s growth over the past two years there would be a mistake, because the company certainly is acting like it intends to plant roots there in the Eastern Washington farm country.