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Why Did US Order The A320's, Etc.?  
User currently offlineYoungDon From United States of America, joined May 2001, 452 posts, RR: 0
Posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3286 times:

This question has been itching in the back of my mind for quite a long time now and I just never thought of asking:
Why in the hell did USAirways order the A319/A320 and especially the A321 when they already had 733/734's in the fleet. I'm no fleet analyst, but it seems like US could have saved a lot by ordering 737NG's instead of the Airbuses. At least they were smart enough to stay with CFM56's, but I just don't see why 73G/738's couldn't augment their fleet of 737's.

And the A321 is another thing. Really, why did they need these if they had 757's? Why do they need both? One or the other would do, it seems to me.

Don't get me wrong, I love the narrowbusses to death, but I don't see why US got them. Can anybody tell me why?

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 1, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3128 times:

US Airways got into a huge spat with Boeing a few years ago regarding the payment/refund of deposits for new aircraft orders (involved some 752's I believe). There was significant animosity on both sides....negative press statements particularly by US Air. This in part I believe drove US Airways into Airbus' arms.

You are correct...the 737NG would have been a perfect fit for US Airways, as would the 763/764/772 as opposed to the A333.




Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineUSFLyer MSP From United States of America, joined May 2000, 2183 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3113 times:

The reason they chose A321's is that they almost carry the same ammount of passengers as the 757 (169 v. 186), but the crews recieve the same pay as if they were flying an A319 or A320. The 757 is on a separate and much higher payscale. Thus the A321= cheaper.

User currently offlineTEDSKI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 3101 times:

Didn't US Airways order the A320 family because of a suspected rudder problem with the 737 which may have been the cause of the crash of one of their 737-300s at Pittsburgh?

User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13253 posts, RR: 77
Reply 4, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3079 times:

Was the 737NG programme up and running when US ordered it's Airbuses?
They have been known to have a pretty wide ranging fleet, probably from all those mergers.


User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11571 posts, RR: 52
Reply 5, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 3047 times:

The major reason for the 320s was that US and Boeing were in a major, very heated and public spat over the US 427 crash. Boeing came out and blamed US' pilots for the crash, while everyone else was pointing the finger at the 737 rudder. That alone could have prevented US from ordering Boeing, but in addition, US wanted to replace their fleet in a hurry. Boeing couldn't deliver 737s in a timely fashion because they sold so many to the likes of WN and AA, combined with the production problems Boeing was suffering.

The reason for the 333s is that US Airways and Boeing were involved in a lawsuit during the time that US was searching for widebody planes to buy. The complaint was that US had many deferred orders for 737s and 757s, but had just bought 400+ Airbus 320 series jets. (Never mind that Boeing couldn't have delivered those jets within 2 years anyways.)



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User currently offlineILUV767 From United States of America, joined May 2000, 3141 posts, RR: 8
Reply 6, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 3013 times:

Also, US Airways is looking at long term fleet simplification. They can go to an all airbus fleet of 2 basic types. The A320 family, and the A330 family. Right now, they are keeping their boeings, but in ten years, I wouldnt count on US Airways boeing jets.

I L U V 7 6 7


User currently offlineFlying-Tiger From Germany, joined Aug 1999, 4166 posts, RR: 36
Reply 7, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 2991 times:

Cost reduction. Airbus made a smart deal for the A32X. Boeing had production problems. And the A32X offered a higher degree of simplification than the 737NG, especially when adding Airbus widebodies to the fleet. BTW, airlines are still deciding what equipm,ent they order, not the public or the manufactures. They take the best economic option for them - for US it was Airbus, for American it was Boeing. So just don´t start these threats over and over (Why did AA order the 737NG= Why does UA prefer the A32X over the 737NG?)

Regards
Flying-Tiger
http://fly.to/rorders The regional plane orders page



Flown: A319/320/321,A332/3,A380,AT4,AT7,B732/3/4/5/7/8,B742/4,B762/763,B772,CR2,CR7,ER4,E70,E75,F50/70,M11,L15,S20
User currently offlineYoungDon From United States of America, joined May 2001, 452 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2936 times:

USFlyer MSP,
I know that the A321 is much cheaper to operate, so why did US even need the 757's. I see that they inherited some from some merger, but weren't most of them delivered in the 90's, when the A321 was available? I just don't understand US's reasoning in continuing to order the 757 when they could have the A321. They even operate their longest transcons (PHL-LAX, CLT-LAX, etc.) with A321's. I understand what you're saying, but I just don't see why they need both types right now.


User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 9, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2933 times:

Okay, here goes:

US Airways started 752 service before the decision to procure the A320-family was made. Some of the 752's were new builds from Boeing and some were ex-Eastern. They offered compatibility with the 762 fleet.

US Airways chose the A320/A319 after the 757 had joined the fleet. There were numerous reasons for the A320 family: the non-availability at the time of the 737NG, the spat with Boeing over the 733 crash, etc. The initial order only specified A320's and A319's although was flexible to include A321's in due course.

As US Airways built up their A320/A319 fleet, the need to add more 757-size aircraft was apparent. Happy with the A320/A319.....adding the A321 made sense. So, yes US Airways now does operate both the similarly sized A321 & 757....but are only adding A321....the 757 fleet remains static. In due course, the early ex-Eastern 757's will probably be retired this decade & replaced with A321's. The 757's could possibly be depoyed on some new transatlantic routes from PHL as the 757 has the range for this (the A321 does not).




Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineUSFLyer MSP From United States of America, joined May 2000, 2183 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2927 times:

The reason why they initially chose the 757 was (i) it had transcontinental range (ii) It was a boeing, with whom they were doing considerable 737 business at the time, (iii) there were large amounts of ex-Eastern Airlines models that could be acquired, cheaply and quickly, and (iii) it has a common cockpit with the 767, a type they already operated.

US Airways didn't begin operating any Airbus A320 family aircraft until 1998, and the earlier models of the A321 did not have anything close to transcontinental range, which is what US Airways needed. Previous to this all transcontinental runs were on 737-300's (save a few that were on 762's), which were severely streched to go PHL-SFO/LAX without weight ristrictions. Often, they did not make it and had to make an unscheduled fuel stop. Eastern Air Lines (who was the largest operator of 757's at the time) had recently gone out of business, and due to a global economic recession, these aircraft were having trouble being placed with other airlines. To cut a long story short, US Airways got their first 15 757's for a song from Eastern's creditors (plus they were available immediately).

In 1999/2000 Airbus launched an upgraded A321, which had enough range to fly transcontinental. US Airways, already having A319's, A320's, and A330's, was able to convert orders that they already had into these A321's, for the same price. They chose this to augment their transcontinental fleet, rather than deal with Boeing--whom they had just settled a lawsuit with over US427.

BTW, the 757 will probably be one of the next aircraft types (after the F-100, MD-80, and 737-200) to be retired; Due to the fact that they only have 34 and the ex-eastern models are approaching 25 years old.



User currently offlineTEDSKI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2921 times:

Do you that US Airways in the future will purchase the long range A330-200 as a replacement for their 767-200ERs?

User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 12, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2922 times:

The A332 is probably a reasonable addition for US Airways.


Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineTEDSKI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 2912 times:

What if things start getting better for US Airways on their overseas routes to Europe, will they consider the long range RR Trent A340-500? If they purchase the A340-500 it will have cockpit commonality with their A330s.

User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11571 posts, RR: 52
Reply 14, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2907 times:

Completely off topic to answer TEDSKI, but, you won't see 340s for use to Europe. The 333 can go everywhere US would want to take them.

If US gets the 340, it will be for use to Asia, or South America.



Send me a PM at http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/sendmessage.main?from_username=NULL
User currently offlineCV640 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 952 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2887 times:

There won't be any A332s or A340s in USAirways colors for a while. They have suspended all orders and some of their crews say that the A330s that they have are in danger of going away. They had stopped delivery of them a while ago. There is a severe cost cutting and fleet reduction plan right now. I think the A330s will stay, perfect for the routes that USAirways has. The A340 and A332 make little sense in that they just add range, all of USAirways routes to Europe are from their hubs which are on the East coast. Since they have no Asia runs, they have little use for the excess range.

As for the reason for the A320s, that has all been discussed aboce to death. One other reason, or rumor I had heard at least, was for new longer ranged routes. Most of those never happene,d so you have A320s flying CLT to Mrytle Beach, barely 15 minutes in the air. Not exactly what the bus was designed for.


User currently offlineFlying-Tiger From Germany, joined Aug 1999, 4166 posts, RR: 36
Reply 16, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2885 times:

First thing US will do is to place an order for several large regional jets. The A330-200 might come at a later point as it is the more apporpriate B762 replacement than the A333 sizewise.


Flown: A319/320/321,A332/3,A380,AT4,AT7,B732/3/4/5/7/8,B742/4,B762/763,B772,CR2,CR7,ER4,E70,E75,F50/70,M11,L15,S20
User currently offlineContinentalEWR From United States of America, joined May 2000, 3762 posts, RR: 13
Reply 17, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2865 times:

In a word, bad management. US Airways' team is one of the best compensated in the industry and this is an anomaly, considering the carrier's anemic performance,
even before the September 11th attacks. Stephen Wolf rebranded the carrier in late 1996 to "US Airways" with the ambition of making it sound like a larger airline and less of a regional carrier, which is really what it was and in many ways, still is. The carrier had problems with
Boeing and decided to order 400+ Airbus planes back in 1997 to modernize a hodge-podge fleet but Wolf and
Co. really wanted to create an airline worth selling.

The 737-NG's indeed would have been a better fit for the carrier, along with new 767-200/300's and even
the 767-400 with the new 777 interior would have helped to simplify the fleet.

ContinentalEWR


User currently offlineCV640 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 952 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 2856 times:

It might have helped getting the NGs. USAirways had a ton of trouble getting their Airbus training program going. Then ran into trouble getting enough instructors to tarin all their crews. So, for a while they were overstaffed and having to cancel flights, as they had no crews trained in the new buses, whoops

User currently offlineFlying-Tiger From Germany, joined Aug 1999, 4166 posts, RR: 36
Reply 19, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2843 times:

The 737NG would have been the worst thing US could have aquired. The A320family is more popular with passengers and the economic differences are just marginal. and they wanted to differ from most other US carriers - who operate mainly the 737 (ice age-old, classic and NG).


Flown: A319/320/321,A332/3,A380,AT4,AT7,B732/3/4/5/7/8,B742/4,B762/763,B772,CR2,CR7,ER4,E70,E75,F50/70,M11,L15,S20
User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 20, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2840 times:

I agree with you CV-640 about the A332 not coming soon. But as a long term addition, it could make its way into the US fleet later this decade.

From what I've read, PHL is a relatively undeveloped market for US Airways despite it being a hub...this suggests that addl intl markets (once the economy starts growing again) could be added. The A332 would provide addl range for possible routes such as PHL-Honolulu (admittedly a leisure route) , PHL-RIO, PHL-TLV, etc.

Regarding the A320 choice by US Airways (and UA), Boeing lost 2 big customers by not offering the 737NG earlier. Boeing could only offer the 734 against the A320 when UA was looking.



Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineThe Coachman From Australia, joined Apr 2001, 1431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 2798 times:

USFlyerMSP,

No B757s are 25 years old. The oldest are approaching 20 years old. First flight with Eastern (PW engines) was 1981 I believe.

The Coachman



M88, 722, 732, 733, 734, 73G, 73H, 742, 743, 744, 752, 762, 763, 772, 773, 77W, 320, 332, 333, 345, 388, DH8, SF3 - want
User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 22, posted (13 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 2796 times:

First 752 flight was 1982. With RR engines.

All Eastern 752's had RR engines.




Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offline762er From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 542 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (13 years 2 months 1 week 2 days ago) and read 2760 times:

US Airways could fly PIT-HNL or even PHL-HNL with either their 762er's or A333X's easily. They wouldn't need an A332 for that.

User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16367 posts, RR: 56
Reply 24, posted (13 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 2756 times:

HNL is a low-yield leisure market....so US would probably use the fully-depreciated 762.....although I doubt they would want to add HNL at this time.




Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8195 posts, RR: 54
Reply 25, posted (13 years 2 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2735 times:

Agree the 757s will be first to go, those ex-Eastern birds are pretty knackered and USAirways even have one of the development prototypes in the fleet. They were beaten to a pulp even before they joined US. The A321 operating costs (not just crew) are much lower than the admittedly sexy but overpowered and heavy 757.


fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
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