787seattle From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 641 posts, RR: 0 Posted (7 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 2028 times:
Where do airplane manufacturers get their product names from? For example: why does Boeing call their airplanes 737s or 767s? Is there some sort of way that the company decides on a name? I know that drug companies use some sort of psychological lettering for their products. Does the airplane industry have the same property?
Boeing used to just assign sequential model numbers...e.g. the 247 was the 247th airplane design they did (not all designs got produced, hence the gaps). 707 wasn't the 707th design...I'm not sure there's any definitive evidence of how it got that number, although it sounded good. All the Boeing airplanes following that just went in sequence (the original 717 is what we know as the KC-135). There's massive speculation on what they'll do after 797 (or even if there will be a 797).
Douglas did something similar...DC-1 through DC-10 were all sequential. It switched to MD after the merger but they kept the sequence going with the MD-11. The DC-9 switched to MD for marketing but it's technically a derivative of the DC-9, so the MD-81 is really a DC-9-81. This eventually became the (new) 717 after MD merged with Boeing.
Airbus originally started with capacity...the A300 was originally designed around 300 passengers. They went sequential through the A310, A320, A330, and A340. They jumped to A380 for marketing reasons, but reverted to sequential for the A350.
Viscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 28741 posts, RR: 24
Reply 2, posted (7 years 4 months 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1912 times:
Lockheed aircraft were mostly been given names related to stars and other celestial bodies -- Vega, Electra, Orion, Constellation, Starliner, Lodestar, Neptune, Hercules, Jetstar, Shooting Star, Starfire, Starfighter, Starlifter, Galaxy, Tristar and others. A star was also included in Lockheed's logo and is still part of the current Lockheed Martin's logo.
Many Piper aircraft have been named for native Indian tribes or names related thereto -- Cherokee, Apache, Comanche, Aztec, Navajo, Pawnee, Cheyenne, Seneca, Seminole, Chieftain, Tomahawk etc.