Let LH buy from Airbus, not Boeing, as they have been doing.
I really do hope that you will never manage an aircraft manufacturer with this kind of attitude.
Let me first state a few facts before continuing with speculation:
1) There is quite a gap in capacity between the 773/A346 and the A388
2) The 747 fuselage permits Boeing to easily place an aircraft directly in that gap
3) Since quite a bit of the existing 747 can be used, development costs will be much lower than making a new aircraft.
4) There are engines available from different manufacturers, making the aircraft attractive to more customers than a 773ER or an A346.
is the worlds #1 airline, measured by international RPKs
is not an all-Airbus operator. They have close to 180 non-airbus aircraft, operate almost 80 B737s and almost 40 B747s.
7) The A380-800 is heavier than expected and has somewhat higher operating costs as initially projected (only about 12% lower than a B744 seat-km wise), which could prove a shrink variant to be uneconomical.
I certainly hope that LH
and Boeing are able to launch a B747-500 (lets say streched by about 3,5 meters after the wing (+40 seats Y class) and about 4 meters before the wing (4 F-class and 21 C-class) to 78 meters. If it is possible, Boeing could make use of the space above the cabin (crew rest? additional fuel tank?) and add more usable floor space to the cabin. However, a new center wing box, and maybe a partially redesigned wing might be needed (also a fly-by-wire system is conceivable). This could easily end up in an airplane with a range of the QLR (or more), and 5% to 10% lower operating costs than the current B747-400ER.