Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 6:12 pm

Virgin in talks regarding A340-600 deliveries
Dateline: Wednesday December 05, 2001

Virgin Atlantic Airways, launch customer for the A340-600, is considering delaying delivery of its orders.

Virgin has ordered 10 A340-600s, including four due for delivery next year. After the Sept. 11 attacks, though, it said it would cut capacity by 20%. "The A340-600s are our biggest outstanding order, and we're discussing with Airbus what implications our capacity plans will have on it," said spokesperson Paul Moore. "We have not come to a conclusion just yet."

Airbus said it expects to commence deliveries despite the negotiations. "We are in talks with [Virgin] but we consider that we will start delivering the aircraft to them next year," an Airbus spokesperson said. Earlier this year Swissair Group cancelled nine A340-600s following its bankruptcy.
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 6:58 pm

This is very bad news and I hope they can take delivery next summer. Maybe Airbus can buy back some of the old A340-300's in return ??.

RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 7:45 pm

Hkgspotter1 - as far as I'm aware, Virgin doesn't own any of their existing A340s - they're on lease from ILFC (I think). Can't see the lessor being too happy about having to take any aircraft back early without very substantial cash penalties in the current market!

This is why the classic fleet was parked.
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 7:49 pm

All Vs are doing is still negotiating the price. Obviously with the cancellations mentioned above and the general downturn in the airline industry it's a buyers market, unless AI want to be left with a load of white tails.

All I know is I'm off to TLS next month for my -600 type course.
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 8:03 pm

Hi all,

I have here the latest issue of Flight International (4-10 dec). From what I understand VS has refused the latest offer from Airbus, which included a finance package to return the A340-300 to lessors before the end of the leases.
Most of the aircraft to be delivered to VS are already in an advanced state of build, putting Airbus in an even more dire situation.
Basically, Airbus is now looking for a new launch customer for the A340-600.
The A340-500/600 programme has suffered lots of setbacks, with SIA delaying deliveries until late 2003.
Cathay Pacific now seems to become the initial operator of the A340-600, and the company is thought to be unhappy with this.


RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 8:05 pm

Hope Virgin & Airbus are able to resolve matters; I can't wait to fly them (somewhere!)

Anyone know what routes VS will deploy these monsters on? Or will they deploy them on any route, as & when pax/cargo capacity demands?


Is there any chance you could take some photos for us? (I'll understand if this isn't allowed).

How different do you expect your work to be on this new variant? Any improvements to make your life easier? What are the flightdeck improvements? Sorry for so many questions, but I gather you work for Virgin as an engineer!

And 1 more question; I'll be flying Virgin from CPT on the 3rd January; last year I noted they were using an A340 on the route; will this still be the case for my flight on 3/01, or could it equally turn out to be the 744? (I haven't flown the '340 yet, so my hopes are that there will be a shiny Airbus waiting on the tarmac).

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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 8:12 pm

Did you guys know that Richard Branson made a deal with someone at airbus... Richard Branson said that if he could get the dude's watch off without him knowing, then he [branson] would get his A340s at a discount. Well, Amazingly, knowing branson, he did it. I read this in FORBES in an article about richard branson. He is one horny guy. (no wonder he named his book HOW I LOST MY VIRGINITY)
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 9:43 pm

Don't forget there was mention of VS doing a deal with Boeing a la SIA A340; i.e. that Boeing would buy the 346s if VS would take the 773ER. If this aircraft is not flying for another 2-3 years, it could give VS plenty of breathing space.

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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 10:22 pm

This is really bad news. I can't wait to see the 346 in full Virgin colours!
See my homepage for a comprehensive guide to spotting and photography at HKG
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 11:03 pm

It proves how weird contacts in aviation business are...
If a normal person orders a product and then refuses to take it we all know what happens.
Ain´t there no binding contracts anymore?
Just wondering...

The Metro might be the Sub(optimal)way
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 11:46 pm

The contracts that relate to buying airplanes are much more involved than condumer goods. AFAIK, in most cases a deferral of delivery or cancellation entail costs to the customer.

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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Wed Dec 05, 2001 11:47 pm

A340 is currently operating LHR-CPT route and no plans to change in the near future. JNB and HKG routes are now being operated by 744 iso A340.
Biggidy biggidy bong

RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Thu Dec 06, 2001 12:21 am

All I know is that the 340-600 I see everyday here in Toulouse is not in VS colors yet... the plane looks cool, but sometimes seems like it will crack in half like the 777-300! Big grin
It's a nice plane though, probably one of the best Airbus have made yet...

VC-10, wanna meet up in TLS? Big grin
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RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Thu Dec 06, 2001 1:26 am

VS can never get the 773 now after Branson shot his own dick off a few weeks back by hinting that twin-engine airplanes were flying coffins. Even rich people can be dumb as rocks sometimes.

Unlike the rest of you though, I'm thrilled with this news. I recall distinctly a few months ago Leahy and his cronies pompously saying Airbus would never suffer like Boeing through this period because their customer base was so much deeper and healthier. People who talk shit deserve the worst. Funny, I haven't heard any comments from N.1 Loud Mouth is a few weeks now.

RE: Virgin To Delay A340-600s?

Thu Dec 06, 2001 8:26 am

Here is the A340-600 that is to be delivered to Virgin Atlantic next year.

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Chris Sheldon

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Chris Sheldon

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RE: Wingman

Thu Dec 06, 2001 9:57 am

hey wingman,

I dont think a 777 can be a flying coffin because it has 2 engines.
Wasnt it proven it can fly and land successfully with only one engine operating if something goes wrong?!!!

777 has an excellent record correct?

take care

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