Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 2:56 pm

Why did SIA order 744 and 310 with PW engines and the B777 with RR engines??

A310-300-PW 4152
B747-400-PW 4060
A310-200-PW JT-9D
B747-300-PW JT-9D
B777-200-Trent 884
B777-200ER-Trent 892
B777-300-Trent 892


RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 4:56 pm

Please tell me or I'll die!!

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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 5:19 pm

Ok GUNDU, I'll save you from death as long as you PROMISE not to start going on the Airbus vs. Boeing thing again.

Many people will say that an airline should take only one type of engine to lower costs and increase reliability. The best example would be Cathay Pacific - which has an exclusivley RR powered fleet. It would make sense also for buying replacements - you might get a better deal because you are buying in quantity.

But this kind of thinking doesn't work for me. By being so loyal to one engine manufacturer, you are vulnerable to whatever affects that company. RR almost killed the Lockheed L-1011 because they went belly-up and the RB.211 was the exclusive engine for the L-1011.
Not to mention the fact that you are not always going to choose the best engine. I know a lot of members here think that RR is the best and GE is the worst with PW being in the middle. But that limits you to taking an inferior product if one manufacturer makes an improvement or your "chosen one" isn't measuring up compared to the competitors anymore.

Air Canada for one is just starting to use RR engines, using the Trent 772B in the A330. Other than that they are almost exclusivley PW (except for the Canadian aircraft which are mainly GE powered).
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 5:30 pm

Whoops, I realize I didn't complete my argument.  

SIA is most likely choosing Rolls for the 777 and Pratts for the 744 because they believe either of these things:

1) That is the best engine available for the airplane
2) They got a much better deal on one engine type than the other, so much to negate the savings effect of an all PW or all RR fleet.

These answer is simple, but they makes the most sense.

I should mention that Air Canada also has GE products indirectly with the many CFM56 used in A319, 320, 340 as well so they are going with all three manufacturers - as are other airlines.
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 6:19 pm

Don't SAA's 747-400s have RR engines. Look at the photos of the 744 on their website -
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 6:28 pm

EG77ER, we are talking about Singapore Airlines here, not SAA (South Africa).

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These sure look like Pratts to me.
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 8:07 pm

It's well known in the engine industry, in which I work, that manufacturers often give engines away and make up for it down the road in maintenance agreements. RR has been known to give engines away to increase market share. Singapore got a great deal for Trents on the 777s even though P&W is the market leader and was the first engine on the aircraft.
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 9:18 pm

CPDC10-30, just a note, Cathay Pacific does NOT have an exclusive RR fleet, their numerous A340s are exclusively powered by CFMI engines. Same goes for Air Canada, but you mentioned that in your second post. Also, I believe SIA went for the RR engine more or less because RR made them a better deal. Now it seems, according to rumors of course, that both SIA and Cathay will go for the 777X with GEs.

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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Wed Apr 05, 2000 9:54 pm

Even stranger, BA initial 777s are powered by GE 90s, but recent orders and deliveries are RR Trent equipped 777s. Why the change?
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RE: Odd Engine Choices

Thu Apr 06, 2000 12:11 am

Strange engines on airplanes are a good topic. Although I can't answer the initial question, I always thought that B767 powered by RR engines looked odd or the PW powered B744 in Qantas' fleet do not look to belong there either.


RE: Odd Engine Choices

Thu Apr 06, 2000 1:11 am

Singapore Airlines chose the RR Trent for the 777 accodrding to a combination of both price and expected reliability/efficiency. They appear to be happy with their choice.

Airlines are now moving away from a favoured manufacrurer, and chosing an engine based on the best requirements of the aircraft in question. This is why you see airlines like Singapore Airlines and Air Canada ordering Rolls-Royce powered aircraft, where they wouldn't previously have done.

BA chose the RR Trent for the 777s because,
(1) They wanted a more powerful engine - GE couldn't develop it in time
(2) They cancelled some RR powered B747s

Similar reasons why JAL didn't mind taking GE engines on it's B777Xs, at the same time as this order, they cancelled all outstanding B747 orders, which are powered by GE engines - they avoided penalty payments to GE and Boeing by taking the 777X with GE engines.