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Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Wed Jun 26, 2002 8:34 pm

In a Flight International article Airbus (VP G. Blanc) confirms it is working on a new design to fill the gab between A320 and 330/340 series.

Airbus indentified two distinct markets :
- Short range 200 passengers
- Long range (7000Nm) minimum 250 passengers.

Main drivers are economic efficiency and family and environmental impact.

Shrink A330 variants appear to be cheap-to-develop but un-economical to operate.

The aircraft will probably be twin aisle and make extensive use of weight saving composites.

A300/310 backlog for passenger aircraft is eight. Five of them are a deferred order for Iraq.

Seems like a new A vs B battle is starting for the 200-250 segment. Airlines convinced both that their existing products are not good enough.

Introduction date new "A350" and "B787", 2008-1010 ....

Who will take the lead ?

I think Boeing, they can put all their undistracted energy and skills in it and are hot to give Airbus a punch.

Airbus is busy on the A380 and doesn't want the new aircraft to put their 330-200 under pressure.

Could become interesting .....

"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Wed Jun 26, 2002 10:48 pm

I think it will have the 330 fuselage though.

I think the Boeing design will also (a little wider then the 767).

8 abreast in coach & twin aisles is the best compromise IMO ...

Anybody knows more on the Airbus plans / market projections ?
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Wed Jun 26, 2002 11:14 pm

using the old 300/310/330/340 fuselage sounds logical: I mean, excluding the A380, Airbus builds 4 families of a/c from 100 to 400 pax with only two diameters. Boeing has 5 families with five different fuselages.

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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Wed Jun 26, 2002 11:34 pm

When it is all said and done, it'll just be two more twinjets that we'll have to distinguish from all the other types out there.

With that said, any time a new aircraft is introduced, it is just another piece of aviation being unfolded before our eyes. I cheer on new A/C from both Airbus and Boeing for this segment.

With these two 200-250 pax long-range A/C on the horizon, and the Sonic Cruiser, it is getting increasingly difficult to see which way long-haul flights are going to sway in the future: Either some flights with 747s, A346s, A380s. . .or smaller A/C, with increased flight frequency.
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 12:51 am

Anyone have an idea how many 300/310 and >10 year old 767's are used for passenger service at this moment ?

In steadily growing / slot restricted markets these aircraft could also replace 727's, 737-800/900's and A321's...

I have a good feeling on this product. Although I think Boeing has the edge. They basicly control this segment now with 757/767 aircraft ...

"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 1:02 am

Am I wrong or are we talking 2 completely different designs here?

1. "Short range 200 passengers"
Short range means that speed is irrelevant. New engines are required
for environmental constraints. Refined aerodynamics, but not revolutionary.
could be a stretched 321 with a new wing, or a 310NG featuring a heavily
modified wing and a pair of Trent 500 (or equivalent).

2. "Long range (7000Nm) minimum 250 passengers"
Here the required speed will be of, at least, 0.86 Mach, which means new
aerodynamics (just wing if it stays at the mid 80's) and new engines
(derivatives of Trent 800 or GP7200?). We are looking here at a 332 derivative
with a heavily modified wing as the most probable design. The problem with
that aproach is that speed and quiteness could mean higher fuel consumption
and shorter range...

Design 1. would be a bid to challenge Boeing in the 757 market niche. To me
this would be a BIG mistake by AI. Leave it to Boeing just as Boeing jumped
out of the VLA race. No company has the means to cover all market

Design 2. should be the one pursued by AI. Right now boeing has a head-start
since its workforce is less busy with new designs and has been developing new
tech with the SC project. However AI already has the ideal fuselage
cross-section for this type of aircraft, which would mean they could start by
focusing on the wing's aerodynamics.
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 4:25 am

I think Boeing will make a better long range product, but Airbus will make a better short range product. We have seen this already, the B757/767 are much better for long range routes, however, the 310/300 are more suited for short range high density routes.
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 4:36 am

.... and the A332 is the much better long range product for long ranges, than the B764.

For the Airbus, I see the same fuselage diameter, but they will most probably have to design a new wing. On the other hand, an even shorter A332 could be too heavy.

Anyway, good to see new aircraft on the drawing boards.

dominguez(dash)online(dot)ch ... Pushing the limits of my equipment
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 10:32 am

As far as I can tell, Boeing has no room or need for an all new aircraft in either of these segments. Boeing is already pretty much redundant in capacity, i.e. 767 vs. 753 or 739 vs. 757. any possible "787" would surely overlap unless it is so technologically advanced that it renders the 737/757/767, all of which are still in production, totally obsolete.

Airbus, on the other hand, desperately needs something between 321 and 332 which would have about a 85 pax spread. The question to ask is who would want this plane in greater numbers; carriers with 330/340's seeking smaller aircraft or carriers with 320's seeking to increase capacity. The commonality answer lies therein. Either a 322 or a 329 would suffice. Another way to go would be to basically copy the 767 with a 2-3-2 layout and watch Boeing improve their 767-200 and then things would get really boring. One other option, of course, is a new body which would have to be a twin aisle 2-2-2 setup which would be a boon to frequent or business travelers. I could market that plane with ease, and just imagine the bragging rights that go with it, "We proudly fly the new A350, the plane with no bad seats". One would wonder if that plane could fly economically with all that extra space without seats or cargo in it. It would be a niche market craft at best with the low floor necessary to accommodate headroom enough for two aisles in an aircraft one aisle wider than an A321 and the subsequent loss of cargo space. I however would love the airline that put one of those on my frequently traveled route.
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RE: Airbus Plans A300/310 Replacement

Thu Jun 27, 2002 10:37 am

I would personally hope for Airbus, considering I am an Airbus fan.

However, I think both companies make a good plane either way. It's a tough draw between the 2 now, and if business more or less stays the same, it will always be.


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