Since I have always been very fund of this aircraft I was thinking with what these great little aircraft will be replaced with the largest European carriers.
The -500 is the only 737 still in use with AF (although in its final days) and it also plays an important role with BA and LH.
AF will replace it with the A318 which is more of a compromise than an ideal replacement. LH will decide this year but likely will have/had a hard time to find an ideal replacement. They are not very fund of Embraer, the Bombardier C-Series is an uncertain candidate and so far LH has said they are not pleased with the A318 and the 737-600 is also too heavy besides neither BA or LH operate the 737NG.
BA has not so much trouble with the Embraer as Lufthansa and they already have ordered the A318 before but changed their order into A319s.
I think because all of these 3 airlines have a big A32x family fleet it is likely that the great 737-500 will be replaced with the A318 engines not because the A318 is the ideal aircraft but it is the best available option.
Other than AF I think BA and LH would go for the PW powered version rather than the CFMs.
What are your thoughts ?
It will forever be a McDonnell Douglas MD 80 , Boeing MD 80 sounds so wrong