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Is There Still A Chance For An A389?  
User currently offline747400sp From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3758 posts, RR: 2
Posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 8768 times:

With the economy the way it is, and airlines down sizing their a/c, you have to think, is there still chance for an A380 900 to be built? I would love to see this giant a/c on the runway ( mainly in CX, VS and EK color), but I know if their not a market for an A389, Airbus will not build it, so is there still chance we will is an A380 900?

32 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17186 posts, RR: 66
Reply 1, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 8750 times:

Yes, of course there is a chance. As long as there are routes to support it, the seat-mile costs of the aircraft are compelling.


"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4783 posts, RR: 19
Reply 2, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 8748 times:

I don't see why not, as the worldwide economy improves. Demand will come back, there will be a need for this Aircraft.


The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2858 posts, RR: 48
Reply 3, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 8734 times:

This is a 30 year program or so, and doesn't hinge exclusively on today's economy. With that in mind, I have no idea if it will happen or not, but it's certainly not impossible.

User currently offlineRedFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4376 posts, RR: 28
Reply 4, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 8719 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 1):
Yes, of course there is a chance. As long as there are routes to support it, the seat-mile costs of the aircraft are compelling.

So can we assume there are currently no routes to support it since Airbus hasn't launched the model? If some commentaries are to be believed (and I'm not saying they shouldn't), the development costs and most of the development cycle has already occurred on the A389 based on the development of the stillborn "F" model. So the question would be, what's keeping the plane from being built other than a sheer lack of demand for a plane that size?



My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4783 posts, RR: 19
Reply 5, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 8706 times:



Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 4):
So the question would be, what's keeping the plane from being built other than a sheer lack of demand for a plane that size

I think you answered your own question !



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17186 posts, RR: 66
Reply 6, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 8649 times:

As Max Q says.

An investment is made based on the net present value of all known* projected returns from that investment. If the investment is not made, such as the 389 now, the net present value of known* projected returns are lower than the net present value of known* ones of other investments which can be made.** In other words airlines and Airbus think spending money on other things will give them more bang for the buck.

* Yes I harp on about "known" but there is no such thing as perfect information. For example foreseeing demand 10 years hence is tricky.

** Assuming rational and profit maximizing behavior from all parties.

[Edited 2009-08-30 20:08:36]


"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineThegeek From Australia, joined Nov 2007, 2638 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 8631 times:

Even in today's climate there are definitely a few routes that would benefit from this aircraft. OTOH, QF would like it for SYD-LAX, BA would like it for LHR-HKG. I'm sure that EK & CX would find some routes for it too. When the economy improves there will be more routes than at present.

The real question is: Are Airbus going to be able to charge enough of a premium for the A389 to justify it's development, and the possibility of it eating into A380 sales.


User currently offline747classic From Netherlands, joined Aug 2009, 2230 posts, RR: 14
Reply 8, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 8577 times:

In the future, after an economic revival, there will be certainly a market for the A389.
Also from an aesthetic point of view I would welcome the A389, because the present variant is to short, with over-sized wings. The balance between length and wingspan could be restored with the A389.



Operating a twin over the ocean, you're always one engine failure from a total emergency.
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 8545 times:



Quoting PGNCS (Reply 3):
This is a 30 year program or so, and doesn't hinge exclusively on today's economy.

 checkmark 

Many airlines have said they are waiting for it. It's a logical next phase. Further enhancements, newer engines etc. http://www.airliners.net/aviation-fo...eneral_aviation/read.main/3677047/


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4783 posts, RR: 19
Reply 10, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 8541 times:

It's just a matter of time. A great shame that Boeing gave up on this market.


The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17186 posts, RR: 66
Reply 11, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 8513 times:



Quoting Max Q (Reply 10):
A great shame that Boeing gave up on this market.

It is indeed. It would have been interesting to see what they would have come up with. The NLA concept with the higher cockpit (than the 380) was quite neat.

However, the market isn't that large (compared to, say, the 320/737 market) and the investment per sold aircraft is quite high. So I guess B decided that their money was better spent elsewhere. See my post on investments above.  Wink



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 8388 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 11):
Quoting Max Q (Reply 10):
A great shame that Boeing gave up on this market.

It is indeed.

I have the feeling Boeing will return to reclaim a part of the VLA market they dominated for 4 decades. (1970-2010). There is a rather big "niche" considering the 777-300ER and 747-8i won't live forever. Above a future heavier Boeing 787-10 / A350-1000 and under the A380 there is a gab IMO to big to be ignored. the 370-500 segement were all 747's operate.

A few yrs ago I slapped together a 2.5 engined Ecoliner with Henry Lam. Topics, videos and JPGs can be found with Google. Don't know how it would look but I feel/hope Boeing will step in..

http://www.kaktusdigital.com/images/Y3_takeoff.jpg


User currently onlineSEPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 7198 posts, RR: 50
Reply 13, posted (5 years 3 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 8295 times:

If Airbus takes a cold-hearted business approach I cannot see how they can justify building it. It is not as if they were going to sell A389's where they would not otherwise sell A388's, and I doubt very much that Boeing is going to build a competitor anytime soon. Unless the economy recovers dramatically and air travel increases equally dramatically, I just don't see enough demand for it to justify the investment. If Airbus looks at total program return I think they will decide that, at this point, the money spent on the A389's development will not be recovered by any price premium that they would be able to get from it. The other thing they will have to consider is whether they can utilize the resources needed for the A389 more profitably elsewhere (such as the A320RS.) I think the answer will be that they can.


The problem with making things foolproof is that fools are so doggone ingenious...Dan Keebler
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 8192 times:



Quoting SEPilot (Reply 13):
If Airbus looks at total program return I think they will decide that, at this point, the money spent on the A389's development will not be recovered by any price premium that they would be able to get from it. The other thing they will have to consider is whether they can utilize the resources needed for the A389 more profitably elsewhere (such as the A320RS.) I think the answer will be that they can.

The a380 is a 40 yr program. "At this point" is of little influence. Airlines like Cathay, JAL and the Chinese carriers might order if a further enhanced bigger A380 is offered. CX said even said so. Some airlines might pay extra and switch to the -900.

Part of the A380 flight test program (e.g. heavy landings) was done as preparation for higher gross weight A380 variants like A380F and A380-900. Sure they wont launch it today. They'll also make sure to be ready when demand is there, not after.

WingedMigrator spend a night thinking a bit further then a -900 :



Airbus might be in discussions with the airlines on what would be the optimal lenght or of a A380-900. I think the A380 wings, landing gears and engines provide flexibility in this respect.



User currently onlineSEPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 7198 posts, RR: 50
Reply 15, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 8110 times:



Quoting Keesje (Reply 14):
WingedMigrator spend a night thinking a bit further then a -900 :

There is no question that they can do it, and it will be a magnificent plane. The question will be does it make economic sense to do so. Yes, there are airlines that would buy it, but will they buy enough of them to make it worthwhile? Meanwhile, they will have no choice but to buy A388's.



The problem with making things foolproof is that fools are so doggone ingenious...Dan Keebler
User currently offlineThegeek From Australia, joined Nov 2007, 2638 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 7907 times:



Quoting SEPilot (Reply 13):
It is not as if they were going to sell A389's where they would not otherwise sell A388's

That's your opinion, not a fact. Hasn't the CX CEO more or less stated that their not interested in the A388, but are in a A389, and especially the SUH version?

Quoting SEPilot (Reply 15):
The question will be does it make economic sense to do so. Yes, there are airlines that would buy it, but will they buy enough of them to make it worthwhile? Meanwhile, they will have no choice but to buy A388's.

They have choice. They can buy 77Ws, A3510s and theoretically they could buy 747-8s or A346s.


User currently offlineAstuteman From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 10253 posts, RR: 97
Reply 17, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 7872 times:
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Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 4):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 1):
Yes, of course there is a chance. As long as there are routes to support it, the seat-mile costs of the aircraft are compelling.

So can we assume there are currently no routes to support it since Airbus hasn't launched the model? If some commentaries are to be believed (and I'm not saying they shouldn't), the development costs and most of the development cycle has already occurred on the A389 based on the development of the stillborn "F" model

Like Boeing and the 787-10, I think Airbus has enough on its plate without committing to the A380-900, whatever the economics.
From a resource point of view alone, I can't see an A380-900 entering service before 2017 at the earliest.

I don't think the development costs "occurred" on the A380F, rather much of the enabling engineering was done during the A380F programme (e.g. refining the landing gear and wing, and control systems to accommodate 600 tonnes).

There is still a question of what the configuration of an A380-900 would be of course as well.

Quoting SEPilot (Reply 15):
Yes, there are airlines that would buy it, but will they buy enough of them to make it worthwhile? Meanwhile, they will have no choice but to buy A388's.

I'll repeat my view that the A380-900 will occur when current A380-800 sales become opposed by more modern large twins to a degree that makes them unviable.

If that happens, I predict the A380-800 will grow some range and become (even) more of a niche aircraft (the 772LR equivalent of the A380 range), whilst the A380-900 becomes the mainstream model which DOES have the economics to mix it with the newer competitors.
i.e. at that point the A380-800 and A380-900 won't compete any more than the 773ER and 772LR do.

But I think we're between 8 and 10 years away from that process even beginning, and some 15 years+ away from it being established, if it happens.

Rgds


User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2260 posts, RR: 56
Reply 18, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 7758 times:



Quoting Keesje (Reply 14):
WingedMigrator spend a night thinking a bit further then a -900 :

Here is the original (not damaged by file compression artifacts)
Big version: Width: 800 Height: 800 File size: 148kb

(click to enlarge)

Quoting Astuteman (Reply 17):
Airbus has enough on its plate without committing to the A380-900, whatever the economics.

 checkmark  Lack of an A389 does not necessarily indicate lack of a market for it. There are other factors to consider than ROI.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 881 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 7731 times:



Quoting Astuteman (Reply 17):
But I think we're between 8 and 10 years away from that process even beginning, and some 15 years+ away from it being established, if it happens.

I think Airbus also might be concerned the answer to any A389 will be a blended wing design promising 15-20% greater efficiency.

Quoting Keesje (Reply 12):

A few yrs ago I slapped together a 2.5 engined Ecoliner with Henry Lam. Topics, videos and JPGs can be found with Google. Don't know how it would look but I feel/hope Boeing will step in..

Before even opening the thread I knew Keesje would be flogging the ecoliner  Wink


User currently onlineSEPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 7198 posts, RR: 50
Reply 20, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7622 times:



Quoting Thegeek (Reply 16):
That's your opinion, not a fact. Hasn't the CX CEO more or less stated that their not interested in the A388, but are in a A389, and especially the SUH version?

I never intended that it be taken as fact; anything I post is my opinion unless clearly stated otherwise. And IMHO the CX CEO is trying to put pressure on Airbus to develop the A389; but if it doesn't appear I firmly believe he will relent and buy A388's. It would be silly for him to do anything else.

Quoting Thegeek (Reply 16):
They have choice. They can buy 77Ws, A3510s and theoretically they could buy 747-8s or A346s.

But if they have enough traffic to justify the A389 the other options offer significantly less capacity and higher CASM; it would be very shortsighted and a poor business decision to buy one of them instead of the A388.

Quoting Astuteman (Reply 17):
I'll repeat my view that the A380-900 will occur when current A380-800 sales become opposed by more modern large twins to a degree that makes them unviable.

If that happens, I predict the A380-800 will grow some range and become (even) more of a niche aircraft (the 772LR equivalent of the A380 range), whilst the A380-900 becomes the mainstream model which DOES have the economics to mix it with the newer competitors.

 checkmark 
This does make sense (hey, I AM agreeing with you about something to do with the A380's market potential-did the sun rise in the west this morning?) I had not thought of this possibility; I was thinking that the A388 would retain a significant CASM advantage over all smaller aircraft for the foreseeable future. But the 744 didn't; and it didn't take all that long for it to lose its economic advantage, and the A388 will last longer than that. At that point it would probably behoove Airbus to put a few billion into developing the A389 to save it.



The problem with making things foolproof is that fools are so doggone ingenious...Dan Keebler
User currently onlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31436 posts, RR: 85
Reply 21, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 7523 times:
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Quoting Max Q (Reply 10):
It's just a matter of time. A great shame that Boeing gave up on this market.

It is to both Airbus' and Boeing's benefit that Boeing didn't bother. It saved Boeing a shedload of money and it gave Airbus a monopoly on the market which is beneficial to working towards recovering their costs.



Quoting SEPilot (Reply 13):
If Airbus takes a cold-hearted business approach I cannot see how they can justify building it. It is not as if they were going to sell A389's where they would not otherwise sell A388's, and I doubt very much that Boeing is going to build a competitor anytime soon.

As Astuteman noted in Reply 17, eventually the benefits the A380-800 brings to airlines will be eroded by newer planes, even if they're smaller, just as the 747-400's market was eroded by the A340-600 and 777-300ER. At that point, a larger A380 model would restore those benefits and regenerate demand for the type.


User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 7477 times:

If Airbus builds a A380-900, part of the A380-800 customers will switch to -900s. Paying an additional fee to cover the additional costs. Happens a lot.

User currently offlineThegeek From Australia, joined Nov 2007, 2638 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 7366 times:



Quoting SEPilot (Reply 20):
But if they have enough traffic to justify the A389 the other options offer significantly less capacity and higher CASM; it would be very shortsighted and a poor business decision to buy one of them instead of the A388.

To the degree that this is true, shouldn't it give Airbus pricing power? They don't seem to have much of that, as Astuteman has pointed out in other threads, the per seat (list) purchase price is attractive.

The main time I see what you are suggesting not working is when an airline is looking at a small fleet (<10) of A380s. In that case it may be that only the A389's CASM advantage justifies the small fleet.

If they can charge another $50m for 50 aircraft, assuming that 50 A388s are converted to 50 A389s, that recovers $2.5billion, which should more or less recover the development cost. Of course, you would want to build as many A388s as you can before you finish development of the A389.

Of course, all this is academic while there's an order queue for A380s worth >4 years of production. Sure, some airlines have deferred, but most should eventually take the aircraft.


User currently offlineAstuteman From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 10253 posts, RR: 97
Reply 24, posted (5 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 7323 times:
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Quoting SEPilot (Reply 20):
I was thinking that the A388 would retain a significant CASM advantage over all smaller aircraft for the foreseeable future.

 thumbsup 

Made my day, SEP.  biggrin 

The number of times I read on here that the A350-1000 will "kill" the A380...  faint 

I don't think it will, but at the same time I honestly think it will limit the economically viable routes for the A380 even more than the 773ER does.
The only saving grace for the A380 really is the A350-1000 is (or will be) less payload capable than the 773ER at most ranges (I believe)

Selfishly I say "Bring it on!". Competition improves the breed, and I'd personally LOVE to see A389's (maybe even A389SUH's) and LR A388's operating side-by-side around our skies.
It will be a criminal waste of built-in airframe potential if this doesn't happen.  yes 

Rgds


25 CHRISBA777ER : Agreed. I also think the number of routes that could support an A389 are MORE than the A388, because the CASM difference over the competing 77W etc i
26 Post contains links Keesje : Still some do: http://www.glgroup.com/News/Honey-Th...he-A380-Orderbook-Again-42987.html I think if it's launched airlines like EK will convert some
27 Rheinwaldner : The trend on the market is at least partly coupled with the current state-off-the-art aircrafts. The 773ER was able to make it look as if there would
28 Thegeek : I keep hearing these two arguments: (a) smaller planes have better RASM and (b) bigger planes have better CASM. The fact is that both are usually true
29 Post contains links Parapente : This hit the TV and web today in the UK http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8243922.stm This is really the wrong thread as it affects all aircraft. Th
30 Starlionblue : I think that as usual the public will not know anything about the aircraft. 99.9% won't know if it has rotors or not until they see it. It won't affe
31 CHRISBA777ER : Correctamundo. Good points - well made. I agree with what you say. True. What the Cheerleaders and many of our American brothers fail to understand i
32 Stitch : One of LH's projected configurations was 549 seats at 12F / 100C / Y427 so I wonder if that is what they have chosen. It's still a bit high in terms
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