Recently, I began to think about how civil airplanes have changed over the past thirty or so years much like how auto manufactures have kept an edge in order to compete and hold a piece of the market place.
The other night I was looking through the photo database. I took particuliar interest in how the Boeing 737 has changed over the years. I began to think just how much the airplane has progressed. To think for a second that back in late 60's the orginal 737-100/200 was marketed as the baby boeing resembling much like that of a "football" for it was short and stout. The airplane was suited for the short to medium range market and competed head on with the Douglas' DC-9.
In the eighties Boeing updated the 737 and introduced the 733, 734 and later the 735. And all of these new airplanes suited airlines well and continue to.
Then in the mid 90's Boeing once again updated the 37 and introduced the "New Generation" family;
736, 737, 738 & 739 . The newest 737's effetively meats the demands of airlines present and future growing needs. However, As I stop to look at the newest 737's , I cannot help but ponder how far the 737 has come. To think for a second that the original 737 was a hair shorter then the 737-500 you put that plane next to the biggest 737 the 900 and I become astounded, that the 737 today is not what is was yesterday. The short stout little 737 is now a jetliner almost similiar is size to that of the 752 (the 900 is) it really amazes me. But I suppose when it comes down to competing and holding place in the airliner market you as an airplane manufactuer have to keep up with the times.
Anyone else have any thoughts on the 737 or other airplanes that have changed through time?
Would be good to hear your thoughts.