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7E7 To Become Boeing's 2nd Biggest Seller  
User currently offlineDIA From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3273 posts, RR: 27
Posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 3546 times:

I've spoken with some aviation industry/economic consultants over the last month, or so, and the majority of them seem to agree on an interesting point: the 7E7 will become Boeing's second biggest seller of all time, right behind the 737. This, of course, is after all the numbers are in and production stops on the 7E7, maybe 30+ years from now (scary to think I'll be almost seventy then).

They claim this will happen because the 7E7 will command heavy orders to replace existing 757s, 767s, A300s, A310s, and now A330s (down the line a bit), and new non-replacement a/c orders to expand existing future fleets.

The consultants that did not agree with this were saying that airbus is on the brink of designing an a/c to go head to head with the 7E7. They called it a "new class of a/c on par with the 7E7." Therefore, the sales of the 7E7 will be more on line with that of the previous 757 tally.

In any case, I thought these were some interesting points.

Any thoughts?

DIA




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39 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineRick767 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2000, 2662 posts, RR: 51
Reply 1, posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 3455 times:

I still think this 7E7 project is really little more than a "Boeing 330".

One thing is for sure, whatever they actually come up with Airbus aren't going to sit back and watch Boeing tap into a lucrative market without putting up a fight - and a good fight they will put up of course.

So let's see... what do Airbus have to do exactly in the 5 years it will take Boeing to develop this aircraft?
Strap a couple of more fuel-efficient engines to the A330...
Fine tune the aerodynamics a bit...

and for a fraction of the R&D costs they have a direct competitor to the 7E7, and almost as efficient.

I wish Boeing well with this project and I commend them for (finally) having the courage to design something new again (long overdue), but can't help feeling this just won't be that much better than what Airbus designed 10 years ago... and the potential for Airbus to compete directly for far less outlay is huge.



I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
User currently offlineCwapilot From United States of America, joined May 2000, 1166 posts, RR: 17
Reply 2, posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 3370 times:

Strap on a couple of engines and tune up the aerodynamics a bit, eh? Hmmm....sounds like Lenny down at the garage can take care of that, and stupid old Boeing is spending millions and millions of dollars? Hmmffff....

I am afraid it will not be that simple for Airbus, and I am sure they are not deluding themselves into thinking that it will be. A corner is about to be turned in which Airbus is the one with the ageing product line, with stockholders to keep happy yet try to play catch-up at the same time they are trying to pay off their last big development...400+ A380 orders aren't going to present themselves in the next 5 to 7 years, and cash-strapped European governments are not going to be as willing as in the past to shell out more "loans". It's sort of like the guy at work who buys the brand new car, with all the bells and whistles, and is the envy of the office for a year or two...until Ed in accounting buys his new car a couple years later, and the first guy, with a formerly state of the art car, now has Ed's car to ogle and envy, with all of the new bells and whistles.

If it is as simple as strapping some new engines on, where will all the Airbus people currently bashing Boeing for tweaking ancient designs be? I am sure the tune will be different then. The fact is, Airbus has been strapping new engines and wings on the same old fuselage for about 3 decades now...another decade from now, that won't be sufficient, and their financial situation is not going to allow them to develop all new aircraft at the drop of a hat anymore. The playing field is starting to level, and Boeing is the veteran.



Southside Irish...our two teams are the White Sox and whoever plays the Cubs!
User currently offlineSllevin From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 3376 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 3283 times:

Indeed, if one looks at history, the A330 was flown a bit over 10 years after the 767. Boeing is looking to fly the 7E7 a bit more than 10 years after the A330.

It's reasonable to assume that the 7E7 will be as much an advance over the 330 as the 330 was over the 767.

Steve


User currently offlineL1011Fan From United States of America, joined May 2003, 271 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 3200 times:

Boeing strapped on some new engines and fine tuned the aerodynamics and called in the 737NG. I'm a Boeing fan but the A319 is a better plane. If Airbus mods the A330 to compete with the 7E7 chances are pretty good that the 7E7 is going to be a better plane.

User currently offlineCwapilot From United States of America, joined May 2000, 1166 posts, RR: 17
Reply 5, posted (11 years 4 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 3162 times:

"...but the A319 is a better plane."

Performance statistics would disagree...both seem to be pretty even, when the advantages and disadvantages of each are weighed against each other...testament to the superior engineering that produced the 737.



Southside Irish...our two teams are the White Sox and whoever plays the Cubs!
User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3064 times:

Cwapilot, you contradict yourself. First, you say that Rick's ideas regarding Airbus strapping on new engines, tweaking the aerodynamics wont be enough, and that Airbus has been using the same old fuselage for their wide-bodies, and they'll fall behind. Then, you say how the 737NG is just as good as the A319, testament to its superior engineering.

From what I see, Airbus will have a new aircraft to compete with the 7E7, but it will likely be the same fuselage as the current wide bodies. I can see new wings, new avionics, and different fuselage lengths. Add new engines similar to those of the 7E7, and voila, you have essentially a tweaked A330 with new aerodynamics that will be nearly as good as the 7E7.

Boeing in the mean time has to develop a new fuselage, which incidentally will be circular, wider than the 767 and narrower than the 777 ...... oh, voila, the B330!!! I'll have to agree in principle with Rick's comments, but I'm sure Airbus will take it a couple of notches further than what he thinks.



"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offline777236ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3053 times:

Boeing in the mean time has to develop a new fuselage, which incidentally will be circular, wider than the 767 and narrower than the 777 ...... oh, voila, the B330!!!

Fuselage size hardly makes one aircraft identical to another.


User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 8, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3040 times:

777, I do realize that. But it is nevertheless interesting to note how aircraft are becoming very similar. The 7E7 will be very similar to the A330 in concept, moreso than the A330 was similar to 767's.


"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offline777236ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3029 times:

It's like saying the 747 is very similar to the A340. Yeah, they both have 4 engines and are long haul aircraft. Well done.



User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 10, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3011 times:

"Well done"

Thanks. I don't expect you to understand my point. I'm surprised you use the F word.

Like I was saying, cwapilot made the point that the A330 will barely compete with the 7E7 because it will be older technology. Rick said that the A330 with tweaked aerodynamics and new engines will likely be nearly as efficient. While cwapilot said no way, he later said that the 737NG is as good as the A319, testament to the superior engineering of the 737 despite its age, since it is only a 737 with tweaked aerodynamics and engines.

My argument, whether you understand it or not, is that while yes, the 7E7 is likely to be the most efficient aircraft in its category when it debuts, it seems Boeing is looking more at the A330 and its overall concept and modernizing it to the 7E7. That's all fine, but I think its testament to the A330's successful design, and that in the end it will still be able to compete effectively with the 7E7 with updated avionics, aerodynamics and engines.



"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offlineF4N From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2927 times:

Captaingomes:

I understand the point you and Rick are trying to make, but you oversimplify
the effort required to produce a competing design through "tweaking". Whatever Boeing decides to do when executing the final 7e7 concept, they will probably use the baseline performance of the competitive model as a floor;
you simply do not spend the kind of money needed to produce a new design and be willing to accept a "me too" product as the final result since you essentially will be offering a more expensive re-hash of a 20 year old design.
Given the advances in technology since the advent of A330, there is no way a current airframe can be modified using existing tooling and production techniques which can effectively compete with a "clean sheet" design.

Bear in mind that when you evaluate an existing, competitive design, you are fully aware of its' shortcomings and address them in yours to draw contrasts regarding costs and efficiencies. Eventually Airbus will have to resort to enhancing the design, but there are limitations to what you can do with an
existing model without resorting to costly re-engineering; keep in mind that this is where Boeing went wrong when trying to get maximum mileage out of the 767. Eventually the plane was modified to a point where it no longer was a viable alternative to 763 operators and probably cost too much.

Undoubtedly, Airbus can keep the A330 competitive for awhile. However, it eventually will become an ageing design which has to be replaced. The 747 can be no better example of that. No matter how much tweaking Boeing does, it still remains only a niche alternative to A380 for operators requiring that category of a/c. The seemingly endless proliferation of models which drew no interest are testimony to that. Eventually, so it will be for A330.

regards,

F4N


User currently offlineAreopagus From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1369 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2921 times:

Captaingomes: Boeing in the mean time has to develop a new fuselage, which incidentally will be circular, wider than the 767 and narrower than the 777 ...... oh, voila, the B330!!!

Not circular: double-bubble. See the interview with Walt Gillette at http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/business/111188_newplane06.shtml, which says. among other things:

Rather than the standard circular fuselage cross-section of the 777, the new plane will have what's known as a "double-bubble" fuselage. This will allow it to carry bigger cargo containers like the A330, while also providing more room than the A330 in the main cabin for passengers.

Airlines are saying they want the 7E7 designed for eight-abreast economy-class seating, Gillette said.
...
The 7E7 is being sized so that cross-section below the floor will be nearly identical to that of the A330-200, Gillette said.

That means it can carry the larger LD-3 cargo containers. The 777, 747 and A330 carry these size cargo containers. The 767 has to carry smaller, specially designed LD-2 cargo containers and this has hurt sales in competitions against the A330.

Above the floor, the 7E7 double-bubble cross-section will be wider than the A330, Gillette said. The cabin of the 7E7 would be about 226.5 inches at its widest, or at about shoulder height for sitting passengers, Gillette said.
...

For the 7E7, this will mean that future freighter versions will be able to carry cargo pallets crossways on the main deck rather than lengthwise, as with the A330, Gillette said. This will allow more pallets to be carried.





User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 13, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2904 times:

F4N, I understand what you are saying. However, what advances are Boeing suggesting the 7E7 will make? It will still be a very conventional aircraft as we know it. In fact, same could be said regarding the A330 versus the 767, as it is not significantly more economical than the 767. It just seems to provide a good compromise between size, range, cargo carrying capacity, fuselage dimensions, etc. The 767 in that sense is not as effective anymore, and much of that has to do with the fuselage and its capacity. The 7E7 of course goes to a fuselage very similar to the Airbuses.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not here to knock Boeing's efforts, and am not trying to start an A vs. B war, but I would bet that the majority of the efficiency gains that the 7E7 will enjoy can also be enjoyed by a refreshed A330.



"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 14, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2894 times:

Areopagus, interesting! I'm sure I have read that the fuselage was to be circular instead of the double bubble of the other Boeing products (except 777). If that's the case, I stand corrected on that respect, but it's clear that the target is in fact the Airbus wide-body fuselage size due to cargo and passenger capacity.


"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offlineSllevin From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 3376 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2875 times:

but I would bet that the majority of the efficiency gains that the 7E7 will enjoy can also be enjoyed by a refreshed A330.

I'm just not as convinced. Admittedly, everything regarding aircraft revolves around very small percentages. But I don't think Airbus will be able to make minor tweaks to the 330 and end up with a 7E7. They will get close enough to keep Airbus customers Airbus, in many, many cases, but the 7E7 will keep Boeing customers Boeing (not a minor sales point) and bring new customers into the Boeing fold.

If *I* were to bet  Smile I'd bet that the 330/340 common wing design will rear its head as a hindrance in getting all the needed tweaking.

And 'tweaked' aircraft have often underperformed expectations; the MD-11 and 767-400 are examples that come to mind.

Steve


User currently offlineAvObserver From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 2472 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 2857 times:

"Veerry Interesting", as Arte Johnson's German character used to say on the old 'Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In' TV show. I'd read initial reports that said the 7E7 fuselage would be double-bubble, a later report in Flight International contradicts those by saying it will be circular. Who's right? Who knows, maybe not even Boeing, at this stage! But I have to weigh in on the A330 tweaking debate. While it's something I'm sure they'll consider, they'll have to study it thoroughly to see if it makes economic sense. Because it would have to be a substantial modification, probably involving an entirely new wing and other major aerodynamic refinements over the current 330, along with the new engines, to even approach efficiency of a new design. They'll have to decide if the savings based on the existing fuselage is worth the performance tradeoff, given that even this level of modification will be costly. It might be they'll decide that going to an all-new design makes more sense, in the long run. There comes a point where derivatives of derivatives don't make sense, anymore, a lesson Boeing has been painfully learning, as of late. So don't be surprised if Airbus decides the A330 can't be modified enough to effectively compete with the 7E7 and cans it for their own mostly-new design, carrying over, perhaps, only the main fuselage cross-section but changed in every other respect, worthy of a new series name-A350, perhaps. One thing's for sure, a 'lightly' tweaked A330 won't cut the mustard, major revisions will have to be made to this airframe to take on an all-new airplane. My 2 cents.

User currently offlineF4N From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 2815 times:

Captaingomes:

While the 7e7 appears to be of conventional layout, I would expect that the use of weight-saving materials, advanced aerodynamic efficiencies and new engines will allow Boeing to make good their claim that the "e" in 7e7 stands for efficiency. This is the advantage that a new design confers upon the builder; the opportunity to start fresh and take advantage of new technologies or science. Boeing can assess the relative advantages and liabilities of A330/767 and address them, take the use of composites beyond what they or Airbus do now, build a new facility to automate production and take advantage of propulsion advances to marry a new frame/engine combination. You simply cannot do that with an existing design. Airbus is locked into the current wing and fuselage along with the tooling which goes with them. Any decision to modify has to be a compromise between investment and return. Can sufficient performance increases and operating efficiencies be garnered through a new powerplant or small engineered changes to the frame? Will they be cost-effective or will more radical re-design be warranted? Will it be more cost-effective? Will the current customer base be interested/willing to pay for an upgraded 20 year old design?
IMO, the decision to modify or upgrade in the face of a new product is always a short-term, delaying tactic at best(I say this because my employer has a bad habit of doing exactly this). In short, it allows you to come close for a minimal expenditure, but when all is said and done, you're still not there and you've expended scarce resources and precious capital to address yesterday's news. And you're still falling behind. Boeing finally seems to have gotten the message. It will be interesting to see what Airbus does.

regards,

F4N


User currently offlineCaptaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 55
Reply 18, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 2802 times:

I agree with you F4N. Boeing has been very stagnant for a long time, with the exception of the 777. Airbus has arguably won many sales from innovative designs that go further with respect to efficiency, among other things. Boeing has not done enough to counter this, and the 7E7 will be a turning point in that regard. I'm sure the 7E7 will see similar success that the 777 has seen in its respective category. However, despite us debating the feasibility of the A330 being tweaked and effectively competing against the 7E7, my bet is that they will in fact come out with their own full redesign for that category, and not far behind Boeing. Remember, the A300/A310 is more dated than the 767 and in that sense it is probably just as crucial for Airbus to attack that 200 or so seat market with a fresh design.


"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
User currently offlineF4N From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 2787 times:

Captaingomes:

Agreed. It is surprising that the A300/310 replacement has gotten very little press. I suspect that Airbus resources are dominated by A380 and will be so for some considerable time, especially if the alleged weight-growth problems are true. Or is it that the 200 seat category lacks the prestige(and big margins) of the superjumbo?

F4N


User currently offlineRayChuang From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 8016 posts, RR: 5
Reply 20, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 2727 times:

I think the Boeing 7E7 could become a hot seller because not only are there large fleets of 767's and older A300B's/A310's that are reaching obselence, but because of the fact that many countries are starting to de-emphasize the main gateway concept of international airports, which means much more point-to-point flying and no longer need large planes like 747's and A380's.

Besides, given the fact that the 7E7 will be a clean sheet design airplane, Boeing could design a plane that not only will offer roomy dual-aisle seating for 200-250 passengers and full LD3 container compatibility, but also could increase the economic cruising speed to as high as Mach 0.89, which means it could offer most of the speed advantages of the now-shelved Sonic Cruiser project. Imagine being able to cut nearly a hour of flight time on IAD-LHR or well over a hour of flight time on really long routes like LHR-KUL. With the likely chance that Boeing will try to get at least ETOPS 240-minute certification for the 7E7, that could make it really attractive for flights across the Pacific.

I have this feeling that Airbus will not take this threat idly. Expect Airbus to offer a new version of the A330-200 with an all-new wing, probably a modified tail design, and uprated engines so it can increase the economic cruising speed to at least Mach 0.86 and increase the range to over 7,000 nautical miles.


User currently offlineDelta-flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 2676 posts, RR: 6
Reply 21, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 2679 times:

...... what advances are Boeing suggesting the 7E7 will make? It will still be a very conventional aircraft as we know it.

I don't think so. You are just assuming that Boeing is designing a new airplane by simply making it wider, to match the A330.

In fact, the 7E7 will have radically new and optimized electrical, hydraulic and environmental systems architecture, which itself will be a major factor in the aircraft's improved efficiency. You should see the intense level of activity in Seattle, with suppliers from all over the world working in partnership with Boeing, as we speak.

Pete


User currently offlineLamyl_hhlco From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 621 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2634 times:

I agree with Delta-flyer, the 7E7 is a part of a new generation airliner with new features and more efficient. It has speed, range,confort and the technologie ,which is what an airline is looking for...but i guess Airbus won't stay aside ...

User currently offlineAreopagus From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1369 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 2588 times:

but also could increase the economic cruising speed to as high as Mach 0.89,...

I doubt it. When Boeing announced the 7E7-over-sonic-cruiser decision, its speed commonality with the 747 and 777 was stressed. They are evidently going to market the three types as drop-in substitutes for each other as expected loads vary, while maintaining the same schedules. Of course, if they can shape the nose as appropriate for a derivative Sonic Cruiser with no penalty for a Mach 0.86 design point, I expect they will do it. (If looks are a guide, I think the DH Comet's nose is shaped the most appropriately yet for a sonic cruiser, with the VC-10 in second place.)

In fact, the 7E7 will have radically new and optimized electrical, hydraulic and environmental systems architecture, which itself will be a major factor in the aircraft's improved efficiency.

Indeed. Maybe it will dispense with hydraulics entirely.

It's always possible that Airbus will answer by freshening the aerodynamics the way Boeing proposed to do with the 747, i.e., by recontouring the wing while retaining its essential structure and planform. OK, so it wouldn't be as efficient as an all-new design, but it could narrow the gap for much less investment.


User currently offlinePhxinterrupted From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 474 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (11 years 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 2549 times:

It's just amazing how many of you think you know so much about the 7E7 considering the plane hasn't even been built.


Keepin' it real.
25 Areopagus : Phxinterrupted, I think it is interesting to exchange deductions of the plane's characteristics based on information gleaned from Boeing, FI, and AW&S
26 L-188 : Keep in mind that the Airbus widebody family, with the exception of the still to be born A380 is much like the Lear family. First came the 23. Then yo
27 Jet-Lagged : Sure the 7e7 will become a big seller (unless of course Boeing backs down, yet again!). Look at what happened to the 737 NG incarnation. With only two
28 Post contains links and images Keesje : Weight I do think Airbus is in a position to incorporate state of the low weight technology just like on the 7E7. I believe some R&D money has been sp
29 777236ER : My argument, whether you understand it or not, is that while yes, the 7E7 is likely to be the most efficient aircraft in its category when it debuts,
30 Keesje : similar (but different) cabin width and range. cabin width ... a few inches, nobody will notice .. range .. how big is the 250 seat market above the A
31 Post contains images ConcordeBoy : Of course Boeing is not in a position anymore to stop those being available for A330 variants .... Ya mean like in the same manner they got 777-exclus
32 MD-11 forever : @ConcoredeBoy "Ya mean like in the same manner they got 777-exclusivity for the Trent800/GE90...? " ....but they didn't get exclusivity on the Pratt a
33 Post contains images ConcordeBoy : Get a life. First, who said anything about PW? Secondly, are you babbling only for the sake of doing so? I'm sure you know that while certain engines
34 777236ER : So what exactly was your point ConcordeBoy? Boeing got exclusivity for the Trent 800 and GE-90. Okay then, is this a good thing or a bad thing? I don'
35 MD-11 forever : "Get a life. First, who said anything about PW? Secondly, are you babbling only for the sake of doing so? I'm sure you know that while certain engines
36 Captaingomes : "So how exactly will they be similar? They'll use similar (but different) engines, and a similar (but different) cabin width and range. " I think you
37 ConcordeBoy : Boeing got exclusivity for the Trent 800 and GE-90. Okay then, is this a good thing or a bad thing? Never meant to make a point as to whether or not i
38 BOEING747400 : Does anyone have the proposed statistics for the 7E7 aircraft in the following categories: Empty weight Height Length Width Max. engine thrust rating
39 Post contains links B2707SST : B744: Boeing has some preliminary statistics at http://www.boeing.com/commercial/7e7/facts.html. Specifically: OEW: 242,000 - 252,000 lbs. Height: Not
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