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Boeing`s Biggest Mistake?  
User currently offlineTristar4ever From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 84 posts, RR: 1
Posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2402 times:

I was thinking about this, although it can aply to any other aircraft manufactuer, what have been boeings biggest mistakes, that have helped allow airbus to gain an increased market share.

Here are some of my ideas:

The 737-400 was launched too late, if it had been launched before the a320 then it could have won valuable orders that subsequently went to the a320. for example northwest, united and lufthansa.

Why where the next generation 737`s not given full `glass cockpit`s`? this would have allowed common pilot type rating between the 737 and 777. this is airbuses major selling point. perhaps it was felt that it was better to have common type rating with the existing 733/4/5 models?

Would it not have been better to develope a 787 4 engined aircraft in conjunction with the 777 in the early 90`s.
777-100 : shortened version of 200, ideal 762,763 replacement.lightened structure, reduced range.
777-200 : same as current non er model
777-300 ; same as current non er model
787-200 : same capacity of 200, but much longer ranged, ideal 742 replacement.
787-300 : same capacity of 300, but much longer range, comparable with the a345. ideal 744 replacement.


so what do people think. i`m not trying to start and AvsB war, just seeing what people think could have been done differently in the past. Of course the greatesr mistake ever made was not allowing other engine manufactuers to develope engines for the tristar, this led to the failure of the greatest aircraft of all time!


cheers,
mike

46 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offline777-200LRpilot From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2070 times:

I think the 738's, and the 739's do a fine job of assuaging any problems with the 320. I think Boeing will also counteract the 380 with the 744LR and the 777-200LR/300LR.

User currently offlineDonder10 From Canada, joined Oct 2001, 6660 posts, RR: 21
Reply 2, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2039 times:

How can you compare the A380 to the B772LR????

User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13190 posts, RR: 77
Reply 3, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2034 times:

A 4-engine 777 version would have undermined the sales pitch for the twin version. And why build a rival to the 747?
I do think that Boeing were a little surprised that the 737-400, an initial response to the A320, did not find more favour in the US, but it more than justified it's development in terms of sales elsewhere.
In terms of service entry, it was about comtemporary with the Airbus.
Still, all those A320 series flying for major US carriers must have been uncomfortable for Boeing.
Hence the real answer to the Airbus narrow-bodies, the 737NG.





User currently offlineSuperfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39854 posts, RR: 74
Reply 4, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2012 times:

Maybe they shoud come out with a smaller 4 engine jet to compete with the A340 to avoid ETOPS?
I don't think Boeing has made too many mistakes. Airbus dosen't dominate the skies. I am glad to see some competition. I would also like to see more Ilyushin, Antonov, Yaks and Tupolevs giving Boeing and Airbus a run for there money.
As an enthusiest, I'd like too see more of a variety of new aircraft. Whith the exception of the 747 and A340, all the others made by Boeing & Airbus look rather ordinary.




Bring back the Concorde
User currently offline777-200LRpilot From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1998 times:

I agree with GDB-- what Boeing lost in the 734 it made up with other aircraft sales... like the 738 and 739.

User currently offlineOO-AOG From Switzerland, joined Dec 2000, 1426 posts, RR: 4
Reply 6, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1980 times:

Tristar4Ever

Why are you so sure that Airbus sucess is just the result of Boeing's mistakes? Don't you think that, as an example, Airbus cockpit comonalty might be a valuable advantage for some operators....? I know that it's very difficult to admit for many american people on this website, but Airbus products are indeed excellent aircrafts, and therefore are selling well.
If I had to find ''mistakes'' on both side, I would say Boeing's retrieval of the VLA project and Airbus lack of replacement for the A310/A300s.
That's just my opinion anyway.



Falcon....like a limo but with wings
User currently offlineSuperfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39854 posts, RR: 74
Reply 7, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1957 times:

OO-AOG:
I am an American and I love the A340!
I am also happy to see Airbus doing more innovative things than Boeing.
I love all plane and I don't praise one manufacture over another.
You should read my above post.



Bring back the Concorde
User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11270 posts, RR: 52
Reply 8, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1950 times:

"I know that it's very difficult to admit for many american people on this website..."
Yup, about as difficult as it is for many a European to admit the very beneficial financing and political arm-twisting that Airbus gets to sell planes. So you should be careful when you proclaim to be holier-than-thou.

I also hope the anti-America and anti-Euro posts will end here with no need for reply.



Send me a PM at http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/sendmessage.main?from_username=NULL
User currently offlineTristar4ever From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 84 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1941 times:

Airbus`s success if because they build great airliners, as do boeing. its just looking back seeing that if things had been done differently, either company could have the advantage.

perhaps airbus could have launched the a330 as a lighter and slightly smaller aircraft, creating a 767, a300/310 replacement. while the a340 could continue the role it plays today. this would have solved the current lack of a suitable a300/310 replacement.

If the 777 and `787` had been launched together as a joint project, much in the same way the a330/a3340 where, then it could have made each aircraft design equaly valuable.




User currently offlineSlawko From Canada, joined May 1999, 3799 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1930 times:

I was talking to a friend of mine who is a westjet 737-700 FO and he was telling me that the 73NG's were designed without some of the 777 systems, becuase customers, actually southwest in particular did not want the plane to be as advanced as it could be so that they save millions in training pilots. That is also the reason that the plane has the optional feature of switching the glass display so that it shows the gauges in the -200 panel configuration. The overhead is identical to the -200 with the exception of a few switches. SO for many airlines it is cheaper to train crews on the aircraft.


"Clive Beddoe says he favours competition, but his actions do not support that idea." Robert Milton - CEO Air Canada
User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13190 posts, RR: 77
Reply 11, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1922 times:

While I agree with your general sentiments, both sides use arm-twisting and political pressure. A recent example being the pressure brought on to El-Al to cancel it's A330's.


User currently offlineOO-AOG From Switzerland, joined Dec 2000, 1426 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1913 times:

DLX my post wasn't anti american and definately not a launch of a A vs B war, yours is. Boeing has always been and will remain the reference in the States while Airbus has a false reputation of dangerous electronic gadget with a computer as the captain. I just wanted to underline that Airbus is making excellent and reliable planes as well and it's therefore normal that they take more or less half of the market, nothing to do we so called Boeing mistakes or government loans. If the A380 is as reliable and performant as the 747 is, then they will have done another sucessful step in the worldwide market.

Cheers
OO-AOG



Falcon....like a limo but with wings
User currently offline777-200LRpilot From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1893 times:

OK Folks... I am definetly biased toward one of the companies, but the thing we need to remember is the Airbus and Boeing are good for each other because it makes sure that there still is competition in the market. If Airbus wasn't there now, there wouldn't be any interesting new aircraft from Boeing... we'd still be in the 707 and the 737-100. And they would cost billions each because Boeing has a monopoly, and airlines could not afford them, and there would be an extreme lessening in the amount of air traffic in the world.

User currently offlineBoeingmd82 From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 238 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1896 times:

OK, Back to the topic of "Boeing Mistakes".

I think Boeing was right to only offer the 777 in a twin configuration. ETOPS was not really an issue, since it was granted ETOPS right at launch. Plus the 777 was aimed at the DC-10 / L1011 market which it matched easily range wise. Now there are 777 models can fly just as far as an A340 with only two engines, cheaper for the airlines to maintain.

I think the only real "Mistake" that Boeing made was to under-estimate Airbus. They thought that airlines would be happy with the old 737 design, while United and other large carriers wanted an advanced 727 replacement and they found it in the 320. The Nextgens are selling well, but the 320 must be credited with giving Boeing a kick in the pants to let them know they just can't sit by and think airlines are going to take anything you feed to them.

Mistakes on the product side, I'd probably say the 747SP. Although it's a really cool airplane, there was just not a market for a long range DC-10, in the 70s- 80s when Hub and Spoke operations ruled, which is pretty much what it is. The seat/mile costs were higher than both the DC-10 and 747-100/200. At least we got 44, I'm not sure how many are flying now. I see a Mandarin SP here in Honolulu once in a while.

Well just my 2c.


User currently offlineEg777er From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 1837 posts, RR: 14
Reply 15, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1872 times:

Boeing md82 - I agree with your sentiments. Boeing's biggest mistake was to underestimate Airbus.

And Airbus's? They still haven't produced a realistic, modern cockpit, 757/767 competitor. They're loosing a lot of market share for this - and frankly, the A300 and A310 don't cut it any more.



User currently offlineRJ_Delta From Chile, joined Oct 2000, 1944 posts, RR: 12
Reply 16, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1857 times:

Hi:

Your are right, But now the things will change with the newest develope of the Boeing's planes like the 737 Next Generation (the next generation orders passed the A320 family orders), the 777LR and the 747-400LR. Now we have too see the new options of Boeing with the Sonic Cruiser (future 787?).


RJ_Delta.


User currently offline777-200LRpilot From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1844 times:

I agree with RJ_Delta.

User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11270 posts, RR: 52
Reply 18, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1818 times:

"DLX my post wasn't anti american and definately not a launch of a A vs B war, yours is. "

Mallarkey. Before you get upset at me... you should reread your post. You single out Americans, in our pride, not being able to admit Airbus accomplishments while you conveniently forget there was more than engineering that got Airbus where they are. Evidence: the relative success of the A300 program compared to the A320 and A330/340 programs. It's not A vs. B. It's just bringing an idea to your attention to be careful about.

PS: GDB - absolutely in the El Al case. But, you and I both know it happens on a much greater scale on the Airbus side. Hell, Boeing gets the shaft from the US because they can't sell to countries like Libya.



Back on topic, I agree that the 737NG is technologically very cool, but comfort-wise, lagging behind the 320 series. I can finally say that after flying brand new US 319s and 320s and CO and AA 738s. Yes, the airline determines the configuration, but it seems that the 320 allows the airline to configure better comfort than the competitors. However, I can't go so far as to say that it was a MISTAKE to make the 737NG the same width as the previous 737s. Doing otherwise would have prevented a lot of the cost savings of fleet and manufacturing commonality. I can say that I really don't want to see a 737-1000. Hopefully, they will at least find a new way to configure the fuselage.



Send me a PM at http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/sendmessage.main?from_username=NULL
User currently offlineNorthwestMSP From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1799 times:

Boeing's biggest mistake is not buying out Airbus when they had the chance!  Big grin

User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13190 posts, RR: 77
Reply 20, posted (12 years 12 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 1760 times:

As if they'd have the chance!
The idea that Airbus's success has been built on political arm twisting is a bit exaggerated, all those sold in the US?
AF buying 767/777s?
LH still buying 747's, the cargo division taking all those MD-11Fs?
To move on, I doubt if we will see a 737-1000.
Not that I've any idea what an all-new aircraft would look like, the last attempt was the 7J7 false-start with those propfans.
Now if Boeing had pressed ahead with that, it would have been truly a mistake!





User currently offlinePetertenthije From Netherlands, joined Jul 2001, 3364 posts, RR: 12
Reply 21, posted (12 years 12 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 1741 times:

Not continueing the MD-11F program. I can understand they didn't want to have the pax MD-11 (to much competition for existing products). But at the time they didn't have a truely popular cargo plane the size of MD-11.


Attamottamotta!
User currently offlineBA DC-10 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2001, 145 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (12 years 12 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 1740 times:

Probably either the 757-300 or the Sonic Cruiser. Why is the sonic cruiser a mistake...

more cramped airports = more competition for slots = less but bigger aircraft are needed.

fuel will become more and more expensive so its gonna make more economic sense in the future to build bigger aircraft with better fuel economy.

What is one hour off a transatlantic flight? It will cost less to fly on a standard service, that will be an hour longer.

Whoever started to design an airplane where they don't know whats gonna power it??

Maybe the sonic cruiser is an attempt to try and replace concorde..I don;t know, but I would bet a lot of money that the Sonic Cruiser will be a disaster.


User currently offlineSolnabo From Sweden, joined Jan 2008, 852 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (12 years 12 months 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 1709 times:

Tough!!!!!
I think it´s becouse Boeing is too conservative in their thinking.........I´m I right or I´m I right??
Wasn´t it US-pilots that screamed the most over 2-engine aircrafts over the oceans in 70´s/80´s?????
Well, Airbus proved them wrong ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!!!
*pardon my spelling in english*



Airbus SAS - Love them both
User currently offlinePhilly phlyer From United States of America, joined May 1999, 317 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (12 years 12 months 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1691 times:

Solnabo:

I believe you need a history lession. It was Boeing with the 767 that pushed 2-engine flights over the oceans and pushed hard for more relaxed ETOPs guidelines. This was the market that made the 767 a success. It had been late to market as a large twin (market started by A300) and this was how Boeing "made" a market for the late entry. McDonald-Douglas fought it because relaxed ETOPs negated the need for a third engine and the eliminated the major market for the DC-10 (later MD-11). Airbus took a hit because the A300/310 wasn't designed for that market (it was more a short and medium haul aircraft) and the A330/340 was the late response.

I agree that sometimes Boeing is too conservative (at least for my taste) on what it introduces in the commercial aviation lines, but the company has one problem that Airbus doesn't have right now. Boeing has to turn a profit and has to answer to its shareholders. [Shareholders and their lawyers can get quite nasty if a company gambles its future and is wrong.] Since Airbus is a marketing and manufacturing consortium and not a real stand alone company, only its participating companies have to worry about the bottom line. As such, Airbus can take more chances right now.

Quite frankly, Airbus is doing just what Amtrak is doing in the US right now. The parallels are very similar. In the US, Amtrak is under guidelines to go off government life-support in two years. As a result, Amtrak has been spending large sums of money on items (station upgrades, track improvements, new train sets, etc) that should have a positive impact on the bottom line when it is on its own (and when it couldn't afford to do it).

Airbus is doing the same thing right now and the A380 is a the example. The A380 will be a wonderful airplane, that cannot be argued. The question is whether there is a big enough market to support it. [That is something that cannot be argued right now, only time will tell.] Anyone in business could have told you that Airbus would build the A380 two years ago for one simple reason. The funds would be made available right now to develop the airplane, but such might not be available or as easy to get in 5 to 10 years if Airbus eventually is forced to incorporate and go it alone as a stand alone company. Airbus had to build it now or, possibly, it never could.

Back to the topic of Boeing's biggest mistakes, I believe Boeing's biggest mistakes have been in customer relations and not on product development. Following is my list:

> Moving their headquarters to Chicago [A total waste of money at the wrong time.]

> Not admitting to the problem with their 737 rudder system and fixing it earlier. [Anyone who thinks their stonewalling and continually blaming the airlines and pilots didn't affect their relationships with United and US Airways is fooling themselves.]

> Being too arrogant with some of their major customers. [Strike two in their relationship with US Airways was their insistence on suing the carrier because it had cancelled 737 / 757 orders when the carrier was struggling and didn't need the capacity. The irony is that it also was at a time when Boeing couldn't keep up with production demand for it's narrowbody products and was missing delivery dates. Several years ago, I was on a SEA to PHL flight with a marketing rep from Boeing who told me that Boeing could have had the widebody order from US Airways (for 767-300s and 777s instead of A333s) if Boeing management had not insisted on keeping the lawsuit alive. He was very angry about the whole thing. This was two months before the A333 order was announced, but he said Boeing management had blown the sale by being assholes about the cancelled Boeing narrowbody orders and later A320 series orders. As he put it, "we have won a multi-million dollar settlement, but will loose a multi-billion dollar sale in the process. Some victory"]


25 Gt1 : Making Phil Condit the CEO. Makes me realize any of us could run Boeing. gt1
26 RayChuang : I in a way agree that the 737-400 wasn't one of Boeing's better programs. For one thing, the range of the 734 was way shorter than what Airbus offered
27 Skychuck : not utilising long beach. they bought MDD and eliminated all but 1 program. the sonic cruiser should be built there.
28 Climbout : Here we go again.
29 Post contains images ChrisNH : I think Boeing's biggest mistake was choking on its own success. A few years ago when their 737 deliveries were so delayed, airlines had the window of
30 757man : I think Boeing may have axed the MD-11 a bit too soon. They could have kept it alive in freighter form only. I'm sure they could have sold a few more
31 GDB : Boeing are planning an RJ with the Russian aerospace industry, they must be thinking of big sales in a rejuvinated Russian economy, as the rest of the
32 Hamlet69 : Sorry about being a little late to the party, but I thought this sounded a little interesting, as the thread allows the oppotunity for insightful comm
33 Zippyjet : This may be way out there but, I feel Boeing should have pressed ahead with: 1. a wide bodied version of their venerable 727. 2. the propfan fuel savi
34 Zippyjet : This may be way out there but, I feel Boeing should have pressed ahead with: 1. a wide bodied version of their venerable 727. 2. the propfan fuel savi
35 Zippyjet : Please help me with this: I remember the early DC-8 passenger jets flown by Eastern and Delta had a retro-cool prop like passenger cabin. What I'm ref
36 Teva : Boeing's biggest mistake ???? Arrogance and ignorance in the 70s and in the 80s, when they didn't believe Airbus could be a serious competitor. They j
37 Hias : Boeing's biggest mistake is that they were not aware that Airbus is/was a real competitor and have better inventions realized ? Who realized fly-by-wi
38 Greg : Looking back, the 720 and 747SP appear to be the only real sales failures. The 743 lead to the 744 and it's too early to determine the 753 or 764.
39 King767 : I can tell you that Airbus did not "invent" fly-by-wire. I believe it was first introduced in some military aircraft, but first became noticed in the
40 Airbus380 : Not making the 747X sooner and letting Airbus take advantage of them with the A380.
41 Mandala499 : The big mistake was the 767-400 ! Should have been 777-100 instead! Mandala499
42 WN700Driver : Boeing's biggest mistake EVER!!! Not having an SST. If they'd built that when they had the chance, and really forced on the American Civil Aero-scene,
43 Hias : Ok, Airbus wasn't the first manufacturer that used fly-by-wire, but it was the first one using it on civil aircraft. The glass cockpit used in B737 is
44 Post contains images Lehpron : When I think about it, I blame Boeing for the money they wasted back in the 1960's with their SST. If they hadn't pushed the swing-wing concept they w
45 Widebody : IMHO, underestimating Airbus, and not dealing with them adequately....whetever way you look at it, over the last 30 years, Airbus share has gone from
46 Blink182 : Stopping the MD-11 production. rgds, blink182
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