Halibut From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 14715 times:
As Boeing rakes in orders for the Hot Selling 787 & gearing up to mass produce there new a/c . Airbus on the other hand , is current bogged down dealing with a good number of issues that need to be resolved .
The A350 for starters , is under consideration to be re-desiged due to it being criticsized by many Blue chip airlines . One of those Blue chip airlines are also warning Airbus to enhance there " already defered " order of A340-600[s] or risk loosing the order .
On top of all that . Airbus is still working on completing the A380 . Which has a number of issues as well , that must be addressed before it enters commercial service at the end of the year .
As great of a Company Airbus is . With all that Airbus has on its plate at this time . Do they have the resourses & time , this decade , to counter Boeing's " Next major step in Aviation history " the composite 787 !
How much of a factor did the A380 play in this situation ???
I disagree JeffB,
This is a legitimate question I ask . I am not saying nor will I say Airbus is going under . I know that will never happen & is not taking place . Just that Boeing now has the momentum & Airbus has a few things it must iron out .
The question is : How long will Boeing be able to ride this wave ???
I understand if you do not what to engauge in another "Pickle Thread " However , I am trying to discuss an even bigger "Pickle" here . Something of even greater significance . I would appreciate if you'd jump in but it looks as if you have nothing to counter my claims !!!
RichardPrice From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 8, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 14099 times:
I highly doubt the situation is as bad as people think, after all Boeing have managed to survive a full 9 years without having a suitable competitor to the 767 killing A330-200 and 14 years for the A330-300 (although in some markets the 777 could be a suitable competitor, so I place less emphasis on that). The current A350 is still outside of a design freeze, and comments have been made about an announcement in June/July regarding it so I dont think theres anything more to be said on that subject until further information comes to light.
Secondly, how important are those 18 A340 orders to Airbus, is it enough to justify an expendature on upgrades that potentially would only be taken by one single airline? With 787, 777 and the A350 potentially eating into the A340 line, maybe its time for Airbus to say 'Enough is enough, the A340 will not be upgraded but replaced in due course. We will not be making peicemeal updates to the airframe.' Emirates after all placed the order for a particular airframe with a particular performance, there comes a point when they have to accept that Airbus wont change the offering on demand.
How many problems is the A380 causing Airbus exactly? It cant be really taking up many 'required elsewhere' resources at the moment, the flight test crew have nothing else to do, the cabin interiors are being fitted in the same place they will be for the next 20 years, the design team certainly wont be kept at full strength just to make some minor modifications over the next 6 months - so what resources is the A380 sucking up that would be a problem to other projects? Remember that all other current projects are paper projects, they dont need factory space yet.
Until the A380 fails to enter service by year end, theres nothing that can be discussed outside of rumour and speculation - the IAE engines havent flown yet, but they were only hung on the airframe 3 months ago, the wings certification still hasnt been decided but it isnt holding up flight testing, the IACO seperation recommendations are rumoured to be changed in the near future. There are long threads on each of those things.
The 787 is a great plane, but it doesnt cover the entire market. Its an evolution, as all aircraft have been.
Okelleynyc From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 219 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 14050 times:
I think the article is fascinating:
The text reminds me of a conversation a wayward son would have with a displeased father; pretty firm, lays out the consequences, but leaves you some wiggle room to mend your ways.
Furthermore, Clark seems to infer that Airbus is not being entirely candid with Emirates regarding their launch order and at the very least implies that they don't have a lot of confidence in Airbus's ability to deliver the product on time. If I was working at Airbus and got this "message" from Emirates (a valued customer) I'd blanche and then get very angry.
Angry, because I felt that Clark was misrepresenting our organization and trying to gain a negotiating advantage on future sales, Angry, because he may be right and I'm chagrined for being in this position, or Angry, because the 787 hasn't even flown yet and I'm trying to compete against a paper tiger.
Anyway you look at it, this doesn't bode well for Airbus and the Blue Chip airlines are beginning to be more vocal about their "concerns".
I really hope that Airbus is able to address this with better PR if they are in fact convinced that their strategy is actually better than Boeing's. Otherwise, a nice shake up before Farnborough with new leadership and some significant revisions to their future offerings would be great.
I personally want Airbus to succeed here because it stimulates competition and technological development. Plus, we really need to plan for the $100+ barrels of oil.
What an awesome Case Study for some young gun at Wharton, Kellogg, or Harvard.
Just give me my Vario, my Ozone Mojo and a gorgeous day of soaring.
JayinKitsap From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 767 posts, RR: 1 Reply 10, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 13955 times:
Not another thread with "Pickle", its time for some variety. Like "Jam", "hot water", "stew", "sticky wicket". Pickle should be banned for a few weeks.
I agree that for whatever reason Airbus has moved from challenger to being challenged. They must also be feeling that, how often has an Airbus used the work "react" of late.
Competition in an industry always has trends and movements in relative strengths, market share, and momentum. The trend of Airbus having the momentum appears to have peaked, with Boeing now reclaiming some lost ground. How far and hard will this trend swing - who knows. It will be interesting to watch though.
It seems very likely that the decision to build the A380 has everything to do with this situation. Neither Airbus or Boeing have the resources to produce clean-sheet designs across the entire market spectrum simultaneously.
Airbus decided that the VLA sector was where they wanted to do that, and as a consequence they must be content with derivative improvements for the rest of the market until they're finished with the A380.
The derivative strategy has certainly been successful on a number of occasions in the past most notably with the B737, but it seems that there are limits as well. For a derivative to succeed it must be able to bridge the performance gap from old to new in a significant way.
I think it's becoming increasingly obvious that the A350 cannot do that because the performance gap created by the composite construction of the B787 is too wide. The only way Airbus can achieve parity, or near-parity, is to produce an aircraft with a composite fuselage, and that requires resources that they just don't have right now.
The choice to build the A380 was a gamble. It's too soon to tell whether or not that's going to work out, although I would be very nervous about the A380 sales in the last two years if I were Airbus. It looks like Airbus bet the mid-sized market in that gamble and they're going to have to sleep in that bed.
Nice post. Additionally, IMO, the engineering resources diverted from the A380 program in order to react to the 787, has had a very negative impact on Airbus' execution of the final development and early production/flight-test phases of the A388.
Stitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 28527 posts, RR: 84 Reply 13, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 13449 times:
Quoting Aither (Reply 5): From what we have read from airlines, the 787 advantage over the A350 is rather the fuselage size than its full composite structure.
The 787's lighter OEW (thanks, in part, to it's composites-use) has helped it in the face of higher fuel prices because it needs less fuel to get itself into the air and more of it's MTOW is revenue-generating payload. So while the A350 was pretty close back at $30 a barrel, now closing on $80 (and probably $90 by EIS), the 787's advantage continues to increase.
Part of that OEW advantage was countered by the A350's greater passenger capacity (allowing more passenger revenue to help offset the lower fuel efficiency). But now the 787 (in 9 abreast) has essentially the same capacity as the A350.
So in the end, the 787 carries the same number of people farther with better fuel efficiency and that is why it is enjoying strong sales.
Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 9): Secondly, how important are those 18 A340 orders to Airbus, is it enough to justify an expendature on upgrades that potentially would only be taken by one single airline? With 787, 777 and the A350 potentially eating into the A340 line, maybe its time for Airbus to say 'Enough is enough, the A340 will not be upgraded but replaced in due course. We will not be making peicemeal updates to the airframe.'
Agreed. Airbus is better offering "employee pricing" on the A345 and A346 to secure whatever orders they can get from current A340 operators and save that cash and time towards developing a new large twin ("A370") or trying to get an A320RS to market earlier. An A345E/A346E may end up being better planes then the 772LR/773ER, but that would just give Boeing the reason to launch Y3 and scuttle both of them, leaving Airbus in the same position they are in now with the A350 vs. 787.
Airbus could very well get the "A370" into service before Boeing could with Y3 and they could "turn the tables" so to speak on Boeing. Both companies have to come out with new narrowbodies, but considering RyanAir and Southwest will probably take the first few years of Y1/797 production all to themselves, Airbus might just be able to afford to wait on A320RS and launch "A370" first.
Of course, a fantastic A370 would probably negate a good deal of future A380 sales, but as Boeing decided with the 772 vis-a-vis the 787-10, you're better off killing your own product then having it killed off by someone else's product.
Quote: The 787 is a great plane, but it doesnt cover the entire market. Its an evolution, as all aircraft have been.
Agreed. Which is where Airbus could (conceivably) make money on an A370.
Quoting 11Bravo (Reply 12): The choice to build the A380 was a gamble. It's too soon to tell whether or not that's going to work out, although I would be very nervous about the A380 sales in the last two years if I were Airbus. It looks like Airbus bet the mid-sized market in that gamble and they're going to have to sleep in that bed.
Looking at the situation today, Airbus seems to have bet wrong with the A380.
Slot restrictions at most airports today are artificial in nature (imposed by treaty [Bermuda II at LHR] or local/country ordinance [ORD]). And fuel prices continue to rise, making the A380 more and more expensive to operate. BA doesn't need the A380 because they can swap narrowbody slots at LHR for more widebody slots. SQ needs the A380, because they can't. But if Gatwick or Stanstead ever decide to expand, and Open Skies becomes a reality, airlines could schedule smaller widebody service to those two airports, and then where does that leave the A380?
Of course, Airbus had no more a crystal ball on today then Boeing did. If the Sonic Cruiser was being assembled right now, this forum would be filled with predictions/stories of massive cancellations and "imminent doom" for Boeing. Boeing was "fortunate" to have their customers - the US majors - meltdown early enough that they could stop the project and develop a new project that tailored better to their needs. It was just...serendipity...that fuel prices rose so high that the project happened to better tailor every airline's needs.
Quote: For a derivative to succeed it must be able to bridge the performance gap from old to new in a significant way. I think it's becoming increasingly obvious that the A350 cannot do that because the performance gap...(with)...the B787 is too wide.
And only getting wider as the price of fuel increases.
I expect Airbus to announce additional measures to try and shed weight with the A350 at Farnsborough (sic) and they may even offer "torture class" nine-abreast seating or perhaps even the "standing room only" option falsely attributed to them in order to raise capacity and lower CASM. However, it's still not going to bring the A350 into parity with the 787. However, it could make the A350 more palatable to current A330 and A340 operators and keep them from choosing to employ a 787 subfleet.
Ken777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 7854 posts, RR: 8 Reply 14, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 13401 times:
I don't think that Airbus is in a "pickle", but they are getting hard on the 350/787 market right now. It's one of those times where senior management actually needs to earn their pay, working out solutions instead of panicking.
Their main problem isn't the 350 - it's the 380. The money has been invested, the plane is undergoing testing and it is critical that Airbus takes care of all problems that come up. And problems will come up - the 380, like all modern commercial airliners, are very complex and there will always be teething problems when EIS hits. Putting you best people on identifying and correcting those problems will be Job One for Airbus.
There is also a need to protect the 320 market. Saying "it's good enough" today leaves Airbus in the same position it was in when they talked about the 330 against the 7E7. Getting caught again with their pants down would cause a huge problem for them, in terms of their reputation with their customers.
The 350 "challenge" needs to be addressed with these two other lines in mind. They can go *now* for a wider tube, but do they want to do that now - before deciding on the materials to be used? How much work do they need to do before they are ready to look at composites? In the long term would they be better if they stayed the course, protected the 320 and 380 markets and developed a followup to the 350 in an orderly manner.
It just seems to me that outside comments are putting short term pressure on Airbus when they need to focus on the medium and long term issues.
Taking finances aside, Airbus having won the race to successfully design a double-decker is already an accomplishment of its own. I think the industry is on "waiting" mode to see what the market reaction to the A380 will be. I'm sure airlines will start ordering more A380s should it prove successful for other airlines such as SQ or EK.
Quoting Halibut (Reply 3): How long will Boeing be able to ride this wave ???
Every market has its own phase. In a tight airliner market where there are only two major stakeholders, if one wins, the other loses. However, I don't think it's something permanent.
Sfoerik From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 104 posts, RR: 0 Reply 16, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 12257 times:
I now call the Airbus A380 the Airbus Ego380. This plane is all bout ego and not built on sound business decisions. The plane will never get to the break even point but Airbus just can't let it go. I don't have much respect for a company that operates this way.
Now they are really feeling the heat with their not so new A350 and A340-600. Additionally I can't wait to find out how many millions Airbus is kicking back to Singapore and the like for missed delivery dates for the ego380.
The pressue is really on at Airbus - thats my 2 cents.
Ken777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 7854 posts, RR: 8 Reply 17, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 11923 times:
Quoting Sfoerik (Reply 17): The plane will never get to the break even point
I Think that the 380 will eventually break even, but it will take a longer time that Airbus wants - and they may make less gross margin off of each plane. THe 380 can well serve its market for 20 years or more (just look at the 747) and, let's face it - Airbus doesn't have a choice. They can't simply drop the plane from their offerings.
Quoting Stitch (Reply 14): Airbus could very well get the "A370" into service before Boeing could with Y3 and they could "turn the tables" so to speak on Boeing. Both companies have to come out with new narrowbodies, but considering RyanAir and Southwest will probably take the first few years of Y1/797 production all to themselves, Airbus might just be able to afford to wait on A320RS and launch "A370" first.
Unlike the 787, I believe that Boeing will plan on multiple production lines for Y1 right from the start, making a delay with the 320RS a huge risk. While some airlines like WN will probably place large orders I think that the orders will be spread over a period of time that will allow Boeing to sell to a large number of airlines.
Airbus might get the jump on Y3, but how far along is the technology transfer from the 787 program to Y3? Like Y1 I believe Boeing and their suppliers are maximizing the knowledge that is being obtained from the 787 program and that Y3 is slowly starting to take shape.
Zvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 65 Reply 18, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 11923 times:
Quoting Halibut (Reply 3): I am not saying nor will I say Airbus is going under . I know that will never happen
Of course Airbus will go under. So will Boeing. It's just a matter of time. The United States of America and the European Union will both go under. That's a certainty, given sufficient time. The Roman Empire, the British Empire, and the Soviet Empire are all gone. Nothing lasts forever, but the future lasts a long time.
Quoting Aither (Reply 5): the 787-10 Boeing has been forced to propose to compete against the A350 ?
Outside of A.net, where has it been written that the B787-10 is a response to Airbus? I rather believe that the airlines saw the possibility and wanted it.
Quoting Aither (Reply 5):
From what we have read from airlines, the 787 advantage over the A350 is rather the fuselage size than its full composite structure.
No, the advantage of the B787 over the A350 is a 15 tonne difference in OEW for same-size (cabin space) models.
Quoting Stitch (Reply 14): An A345E/A346E may end up being better planes then the 772LR/773ER, but that would just give Boeing the reason to launch Y3 and scuttle both of them, leaving Airbus in the same position they are in now with the A350 vs. 787.
Airbus could very well get the "A370" into service before Boeing could with Y3 and they could "turn the tables" so to speak on Boeing.
The simpler response from Boeing to an A340E would be a B787-11X with a MTOW in the 600,000 to 640,000 lbs range. Still, I would rather see Airbus produce a clean-sheet composite-fuselage twin with a fuselage width between those of the B777 and B747 (which would kill the B777-300ER and B747-8 stone cold dead) than develop an A340E (which I don't think would catch the B777-300ER in CASM).
Quoting Stitch (Reply 14): a fantastic A370 would probably negate a good deal of future A380 sales
A fantastic large composite twin from Airbus would kill the WhaleJet, the SuperJumbo, and the B777-300ER. Bring it on!
Quoting B777A340Fan (Reply 16): Taking finances aside, Airbus having won the race to successfully design a double-decker is already an accomplishment of its own.
In business, one never gets to set finances aside in judging success. Finances are the metric by which success in business is judged.
SONICDANCE From Hong Kong, joined Nov 2005, 20 posts, RR: 0 Reply 21, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 11572 times:
I just think Emirates is playing games to get Boeing to lower the price on the 787-10 through luring Airbus to change the A350. We all know they kept pushing Boeing to do that for a long long time and I think the order is pretty much Boeings. I guess the reason that -10 is still not launched is 1) Boeing stands real firm in the price of the -10 and 2) THe engines for the -10 is not in sight (but they got RR's reassurance on doing that already so no big deal).
In my Opinion, A350 should stay the way it is. Maybe they should offer -1000 rather than going after a wider fuselage coz, like everyone here says, they are extremely strained with the current project, plus it can sorta replace the A340 market rather than throwing money into the A340E, which has no hope for the future. I know -1000's performance won't be "great", as long fuselage leads to additional structure weight and there's no engine for it yet. But it could at least slow Boeing down for a bit in order to buy time to find out further improvements on the A350.
My personal opinion is that the worst decision Airbus made in the A350 issue is not changing the wing design. If they could spend that much money in reprofiling the wing and produce a composite wing, why not go a step further and totally redesign the wing? (well... I know it's expensive!) It would at least put the A350 closer to the 787, just like 737NG as a response to the A320.
Finally Airbus won't collapse. Airliners and Europeans won't let that to happen either. But Airbus will have to endure the down time for a while... Hopefully NSR will save them from it's weak position...
Zvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 65 Reply 22, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 11319 times:
Quoting Ken777 (Reply 18): THe 380 can well serve its market for 20 years or more (just look at the 747) and, let's face it - Airbus doesn't have a choice.
From the JumboJet's inception, it had unmatched range until the B777-200ER and A340-500 entered service. For its entire life (right up to today) it has been unmatched in CASM. That will change for a few years from the WhaleJet's EIS (in 2007) until the SuperJumbo's EIS (in 2010?). The WhaleJet will never be best in range and will be best in CASM only for a few years. Range and CASM were the main reasons airlines bought JumboJets, not because of slot limitations.
Quoting Ken777 (Reply 18): They can't simply drop the plane from their offerings.
When airlines are no longer willing to order the WhaleJet at any price above Airbus' cost of the production and the backlog is gone, Airbus will stop production.
Quoting Stitch (Reply 20): Were there not worries about the length of such a stretch? Or would she be within the fuselage length of a 777-300 and the 787-12 would be "too long to turn"?
Assuming each stretch is 240 inches (difference between the B787-8 and B787-9), a B787-11X would be almost exactly the same length as the A340-600, slightly longer than the B777-300ER. A B787-12X would have turning difficulties on many taxiways.
Quoting SONICDANCE (Reply 22): My personal opinion is that the worst decision Airbus made in the A350 issue is not changing the wing design. If they could spend that much money in reprofiling the wing and produce a composite wing, why not go a step further and totally redesign the wing? (well... I know it's expensive!)
Changing the sweep would have allowed Airbus to increase the cruise speed a bit, but it would not have helped with fuel consumption. Increasing the span (longer thinner wings are possible with composite construction) would have helped with economy, but long wingspans limit the gates one can use. I think the wing issues with the A350 are overblown.
SONICDANCE From Hong Kong, joined Nov 2005, 20 posts, RR: 0 Reply 23, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 10961 times:
I checked the wingspan of the A350... Can't believe they are even wider than the 787-9 (A350: 61.1m, 787-9: 60m). I'm just wondering how far can the wings be skretched withouth interfering w/ gate operations. I also have a question on the aspect ratio of A330 and A350... It doesn't seem like it will be higher than 787's as the area of the wing on the A330's is larger than 787s while its span is not much wider. And if I didn't forget the numbers, the aspect ratio of 787-8 and -9's should be over 10. I also suspect the wingtip efficiency won't be as high as 787's, as they are a lot more conventional looking... (JUST SPECULATION! Airbus will of course try to refine them to the best they can)
I think the sweep angle is an issue, not from an fuel consumption standpoint but from the crew schedule standpoint. Judging from Airbus's action to reprofile the cockpit in response to airliner's request on increasing cruise speed (well... it's more than cruise speed. It's also about crew rest area), I think airliners do have a little issue w/ the cruise speed, which Airbus can't do anything to improve it as the sweep is the biggest factor in cruise speed
Quoting Co7772wuh (Reply 1): Quoting Halibut (Thread starter):
How much of a factor did the A380 play in this situation ???
A big factor . I believe that the 747-8 will out sell the a380 .
I do think the Airbus380 variants will be the real game changers of long haul travel.
- 80% of current long haul traffic is hub-hub at this moment
- fuel prices are rising
- traffic will tripple in the next 20 years
160 orders & 100 options doesn´t seem a lot before EIS but these aircraft count double. Most flag carriers ordered them, 747´s orders were only good for freight during the last 5 years.
Folks form the other side of the ocean may not like it, but that won´t play a role in BA, CX and UA boardrooms.
25 Astuteman: I suspect a long narrow wing would be heavier, too, indicating that a trade-off compromise would have to be reached. Agree with this. Absolutely agre
26 Stitch: And I imagine that if SQ's internal performance models are true, CX won't like the fact that the A388 won't be able to do LAX/SFO-HKG at full load 36
27 B777A340Fan: I hope you're not an engineer because that statement, I hope you realize, was completely unrealistic. Designing an airplane takes a little more than
28 Zvezda: The first part of Bair's remark tends to support your hypothesis, but doesn't admit that the A350 had anything to do with driving the B787-10. The se
29 Jacobin777: while I'll admit for their irresponsibility in wasting valuable resources for building the A380, to a certain extent..I can't blame them about the A3
30 Stitch: I would imagine that, when the 787 was configured with 8-across, a 787-10 was a better match in terms of passenger capacity to the A350-900. As such,
31 Zvezda: Do you think that EK, who fit their B777s 10 abreast, only thought of fitting B787s 9 abreast after they started pushing Boeing for a B787-10? I thin
32 Art: I go along with your thinking. How do you propose Airbus should let it go? Refuse new orders? Refuse options take up and re-orders? It looks more and
33 ER757: Congratulations on this thread Halibut, you finally made me agree with Keesje While I am no Airbus cheerleader (I live in Seattle for crying out loud
34 Halibut: Interesting hypothesis Jacobin777, I think it may be a combination of both ? Honestly , I am baffled why Emirates is attempting to push Airbus to enh
35 ER757: Not wrong per se, just that is Airbus-centric views can be a tad askew of the truth
36 Jacobin777: certainly is a combination of many factors....those which I listed included... I think EK is trying to push Airbus to develop the best possible plane
37 Zvezda: What was the price of oil when LH placed their last A340-600 order?
38 Revelation: And of course the longer it takes to sell airframes, the further out the break even point shifts in time, due to the time value of money. The origina
39 PlaneHunter: The A346 is still a fuel efficient airliner even under the today's circumstances. Unlike the belief of certain members of that board, the A346's oper
40 MauriceB: Although im a boeing fan, i will defend Airbus in this case. 1. A340-500/600 did sell well for its class, and airlines like LH/VS are happy with them,
41 Jacobin777: LH put its first flight in to service on December 15,2003 when oil was $30-$33 per barrel.... They were a launch customer for the A346 when it was la
42 Co7772wuh: A346 still a fuel efficient airliner , hah ? Not accourding to Emirates !
43 BoomBoom: According to our favorite analyst, Richard A. The 777 has captured about 70 percent of all orders in its market since the A340 made its debut in 1997