Jan. 21, 2019, © Leeham News: Last week’s Airbus North America Tour (#AirbusNATour on Twitter) was a whirlwind 2 ½ days encompassing Montreal Mirabel, Columbus (MS) and Mobile (AL).
To those who don’t follow Airbus Americas closely, the Mississippi stop might be a puzzle. I’ll come back to this to explain why an international group of media, including me, made this trek.
Let’s start with Montreal.
Jan. 17, 2019, © Leeham News: Airbus is planning performance improvement packages for the A220, intended to shave operating costs off an airplane that already beat performance promises.
The PIPs, as the upgrades are known, are common among all airliners. In this case, the PIPs were under study by Bombardier long before Airbus acquired a 50.01% stake in the C Series program last year.
While financially-strapped Bombardier may have been able to find the money to execute, giant Airbus has no problem doing so.
By Bjorn Fehrm
January 17, 2019, © Leeham News: It’s all about the new Airbus A220 on the North America press tour Airbus is hosting this week. Airbus got this top modern aircraft as a windfall after Boeing tried to block its sale on the US Market in 2017.
While the tour presents the A220 in the best of lights, it can’t shine brighter than Airbus’ own A320neo. The graph from the tour which positions them in capacity and range shows a clear little brother-large brother relationship. The reality, when comparing apples to apples, is another.
Jan. 16, 2019, © Leeham News, Mobile (AL): Groundbreaking for the Airbus A220 final assembly line today might be viewed as a bittersweet moment for Alain Bellemare, CEO on Bombardier, designer of the C Series.
The program nearly bankrupted Bombardier. A sale of 50.01% of the CSLAP limited partnership to Airbus was necessary to save the program and Bombardier.
Bombardier’s share in the program was reduced to about a third after the Airbus sale. (A quasi-government Quebec pension fund owns the rest.)
But in an interview following the groundbreaking, Bellemare was almost giddy with excitement.
Jan. 14, 2019, © Leeham News: Airbus announced today that its A220 received certification for 180- minute ETOPS from the Canadian regulatory authorities.*
The announcement came at the first Airbus North American Tour, a three-day event that kicked off at the Montreal, Canada, Mirabel Airport facilities created by Bombardier.
Bombardier, of course, created the C Series, which is now the A220.
LNC projects that Airbus will deliver nearly 950 airliners this compared, compared with Boeing’s projected deliveries of about 890 jets.
These are LNC forecasts, not those of the manufacturers. Guidance for the year should come on their respective year-end earnings calls: February for Airbus and Jan. 30 for Boeing.
Jan. 7, 2019, © Leeham News: ATR, the turboprop airliner OEM, enters 2019 in a commanding position.
Year-end 2018 order numbers for ATR and rival Bombardier aren’t in yet.
Through October, ATR held 74% of the backlog. Bombardier, buoyed by a large order for 25 Q400s from India’s SpiceJet (the 2027 deliveries in the Chart below), had 26% of the backlog.
Bombardier contracted to sell its Q400 program to Longview Capital Partners, parent of Viking Air. The Canadian company previously purchased all legacy de Havilland programs, including the Beaver, Twin Otter and aerial firefighting aircraft.
Viking restarted production of the Twin Otter and is gearing up to restart the Beaver.
Its plans for the Q400, Q300 and previous Dash 8 programs hasn’t been announced.
Jan. 2, 2019, © Leeham News: Boeing dominated the Top 10 news stories last year, as measured by views.
Displacing Airbus at Hawaiian Airlines, which ordered the 787-9 and canceled the A330-800, led the readership.
Airbus’ launch of the A350-900ULR came in second.
Here are the Top 10 stories on Leeham News for 2018: Read more
By Bjorn Fehrm
December 19, 2018, © Leeham News.: Next year is a time when Airbus hopes to leave its troubled 2018 behind.
But 2018 was also when the company wanted to leave the troubles of 2017 behind it.
Not only did 2018 not improve. In a number of ways it turned worse.
Turmoil in the management ranks brought back memories of the politically infested Airbus of 20 years ago. And there were other issues.
Production problems with the A320 continued. The A330neo was further delayed and the A380 order from Emirates to save the program took forever to materialize. The negotiations to fix the contracts for A400M couldn’t be brought to a close.
There were two bright lights in the year. The A350 was now out of its cabin supplier problems and delivering aircraft to plan. The other was the gift from Boeing’s suing Bombardier and its CSeries the year before. The top modern Bombardier CS100/300 became Airbus A220 on the first of July. Price tag; $1 for 50.01% of the program.
Dec. 17, 2018, © Leeham News: Lion Air’s co-founder is threatening to cancel an order for more than 200 Boeing 737 MAXes following what he says is Boeing’s blaming the airline for the Oct. 29 crash of Flight 610.
All 189 people aboard the three month old 737-8 died when the plane plunged into the Java Sea 11 minutes after take-off from Jakarta.