MaxQ2351
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AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 7:51 am

Hey everyone. Sorry if there has already been a thread on this....I searched but I couldn't come up with anything. Anyhow, according to www.airfleets.net, AA has 328 active MD-80's. Some are newer than others, but they're all going to have to be replaced eventually. So, does anyone know about what AA is thinking for its replacement?? Unless AA has a change of heart, I think the first and last Airbus they bought was the A-300, so I'd guess they'd go with the 737. Does anyone know though if they intend to order the 737-800, or if they want to hold out to see if Boeing announces the 737-1000 series (that will have a common cockpit type between it, the 787, and 747-8).

Another thing too: 328 is a LOT of planes to replace. At the rate of 50 per year, which would be a very aggressive rate, it'd take them almost 7 years to replace the fleet!! Does Boeing, or Airbus, have the ability to drastically increase production for a quicker delivery of a huge order like AA's??
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1337Delta764
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:01 am

AA could pull an NW DC-9, or replace the MD-80s with the 737RS.
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TWA902fly
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:24 am

I think they still have options on a lot of 737s (600/700/800/900), and by a lot i mean 100s. I might be wrong though.

But before we answer your question we have to answer this: When will NW replace their DC-9s?

'902
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COERJ145
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:24 am

With good maintanence, they could keep them for a while. Look at the NW DC9s, some are 30+ years old and in pristine condition. AA could phase them out slowly and replace them with 73Gs.
 
jacobin777
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:36 am

Quoting MaxQ2351 (Thread starter):
Hey everyone. Sorry if there has already been a thread on this....I searched but I couldn't come up with anything. Anyhow, according to www.airfleets.net, AA has 328 active MD-80's. Some are newer than others, but they're all going to have to be replaced eventually. So, does anyone know about what AA is thinking for its replacement?? Unless AA has a change of heart, I think the first and last Airbus they bought was the A-300, so I'd guess they'd go with the 737. Does anyone know though if they intend to order the 737-800, or if they want to hold out to see if Boeing announces the 737-1000 series (that will have a common cockpit type between it, the 787, and 747-8).

Another thing too: 328 is a LOT of planes to replace. At the rate of 50 per year, which would be a very aggressive rate, it'd take them almost 7 years to replace the fleet!! Does Boeing, or Airbus, have the ability to drastically increase production for a quicker delivery of a huge order like AA's??

it will probably be a combination of a few things.....1) they will retire a few and not replace them 2)they will replace a few with some 737's...3)they will wait for a "next-generation" single-isle seat...("Y1" from Boeing)...a few of the ex-TWA's MadDog's are new anyway, so they won't be leaving the fleet for quite some time...
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Boeing7E7
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:08 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 1):
AA could pull an NW DC-9, or replace the MD-80s with the 737RS.

Without a new more fuel efficient engine to extend airframe life and improve noise capability to Stage IV, they'll have no choice but to go with new birds. If they Boeing/Airbus pop out something on the order of 10-15% more efficient than a 737/A320, the MD-80's will be at least 20% less efficient. You just can't make a case for that anymore with fuel going the way it is.
 
steeler83
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:23 am

Quoting Boeing7E7 (Reply 5):
Without a new more fuel efficient engine to extend airframe life and improve noise capability to Stage IV, they'll have no choice but to go with new birds. If they Boeing/Airbus pop out something on the order of 10-15% more efficient than a 737/A320, the MD-80's will be at least 20% less efficient. You just can't make a case for that anymore with fuel going the way it is.

That, and why would anyone want to replace a fairly sizeable aircraft with a smaller one...

For the MD-80 I can see at the very newest a 738 or even a 739ER. Just my  twocents 
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nitrohelper
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:25 am

Quoting TWA902fly (Reply 2):
When will NW replace their DC-9s?

I'm not sure ,but I think this was discussed once or twice B4.  scratchchin   shhh 
 
737-990
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 11:20 am

When AA placed it's exclusive order with Boeing back in the late 90s, it ordered 70 738s and had rolling options on over 400! AA later increased it's firm order to over a 100 frames (116?). The idea was that the 737 would not only replace it's 727s but eventually the MD80s as well. Well, a few things have changed since then. It purchased TWA and increased it's MD80s by more than 100 frames and then the down turn in the economy after 9-11 put any thoughts of replacements on the back-burner. The 738s on order have been deferred until late in the decade to preserve cash.
By my estimates, to replace 328 MDs with say 738s would cost over 16 billion dollars! While I'm sure AA could get major discounts it's still a huge investment. AA might be better off just waiting for the next generation of aircraft from Boeing to take advantage of the better economics offered by a 737 replacement.
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siromega
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:26 pm

Indeed, AA would be at a serious disadvantage vs other carriers if they dont wait for Y1 - they'll be stuck with higher fuel consumption and that disadvantage gets more pronouced in terms of ticket prices as oil gets more expensive. They'll just let the oldest ones be condemned to the junkyard, and then eliminate a few flights here and there where loads are low. Maybe pick up a few new 738s or whatever as they need them. I dont see the price of oil going down to a reasonable price ($45/bbl) anytime soon so its not like airtravel is going to shoot up dramatically.

What seems more interesting is who is going to pony up the cash to be first in line for Y1 in 6 years? NW, AA, WN??
 
ckfred
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 1:08 pm

Quoting 737-990 (Reply 8):
When AA placed it's exclusive order with Boeing back in the late 90s, it ordered 70 738s and had rolling options on over 400!

Actually, AA signed a 20-year agreement with Boeing to replace its fleet, which was about 625 planes at the time. Although there are prices in the contract for various models, AA did not agree to buy a specific number of any mmodel. It merely agreed to buy a total of 625 airplanes during the next 20 years.

Right now, AA has deferred delivery of 47 737-800s until after 2010. Some feel that AA may convert all of these deferred deliveries to the successor to the 737NG series.

A friend of mine, who is a pilot with AA, has heard a rumor (and it's only a rumor), that AA will eventually take delivery of some or all of the deferred 737s to replace the oldest MD-80s. If AA's financial picture improves, AA could also push up delivery dates to 2010 or earlier.

Further, AA is probably, like WN, waiting for Boeing to give more details on the 737NG successor. Considering that AA hasn't taken a delivery of a 737 since the end of '01, AA can probably make do with the MD-80s until Boeing has a new aircraft.

I would assume that some of the MD-80s will be replaced by a 100-seat plane, if Boeing can design one that can operate on short and medium-length routes profitably. AA has had scheduling headaches, since it retired the F100. There is a gap between the 70-seat CRJ and the 136-seat MD-80.

In other words, Boeing needs to come up with a plane that can fly routes served by 737-200s and-500s, rather the -600 which only makes sense for thin long-haul routes.

There are routes that can't support solely MD-80s in terms of traffic, but flying only RJs or a mix of RJs and MD-80s makes for problems, particularly at ORD with the FAA-flight restrictions. Further, some routes have RJs only could support a larger plane with 2-class service, since they have a lot of business flyers. HPN-ORD comes to mind.
 
MaxQ2351
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 1:15 pm

Quoting 737-990 (Reply 8):
it ordered 70 738s and had rolling options on over 400! AA later increased it's firm order to over a 100 frames (116?).

Yea I remember that. If its options were converted to firm orders it was supposed to be the largest single order for an airliner in history or something like that........ too bad it fell through!!

Quoting SirOmega (Reply 9):
What seems more interesting is who is going to pony up the cash to be first in line for Y1 in 6 years? NW, AA, WN??

I hope to God NW emerges from bankruptcy by then so they can order Y1!! My dad works for NW, and the rumor mill among the pilots has been producing word that NW might go for the ERJ-190 as a DC-9 replacement. Maybe it's just me, but I'd prefer Y1 over an ERJ-190 any day of the week!!
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hz747300
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 1:59 pm

Quoting 737-990 (Reply 8):
While I'm sure AA could get major discounts it's still a huge investment. AA might be better off just waiting for the next generation of aircraft from Boeing to take advantage of the better economics offered by a 737 replacement.

Couldn't they order them without:
- window shades
- reclining seats
- seat pockets
- no movable armrests

Then by ordering in bulk, they could get a pretty crafty discount.

I thought that the 73G would be a good replacement when this was brought up on a similar thread. However, my idea was dismissed as amateurish at best because of crew requirements for the 73G and 738. The part-time aviation experts noted, that it would be cheaper to use the 738 because it is already assimilated into the operations.

Taking this one step further, if AA were to go the way of the 737-NNG variant, would that not bring obsolecense to the 738 before its predicted time? Or will the 737-NNG commonality be as such that AA won't skip a beat?
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Midway737
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:47 pm

Quoting Ckfred (Reply 10):
I would assume that some of the MD-80s will be replaced by a 100-seat plane, if Boeing can design one that can operate on short and medium-length routes profitably. AA has had scheduling headaches, since it retired the F100. There is a gap between the 70-seat CRJ and the 136-seat MD-80.

I think it will look good to replace with CRJ-700 and extend model. I have notice some route do switch from MD-80 with CRJ-700 or vice versa. Will see what happen.
 
Oykie
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:52 pm

There has been talks on here about an engine replacement program for the MD-80 fleet to cut fuel capacity, but I guess they haven't got the numbers to add up, since they haven't started yet or any updates are available.
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FlagshipAZ
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:09 pm

The oldest MD-80 in AA's fleet is 22 yrs old, while the youngest is a mere 7 yrs old. AA has talked about retiring the oldest 30-35 MD-80s within 2-3 yrs, while the rest may be consider for a re-engined program with the PW6000. But nevertheless, American has alot of MD-80s to take care of. Even 10 years from now, AA will still have MD-80s flying for them. AA does have 350+ MD-80s now, including the ones in the desert. I also see AA getting more 738s to replace the older MD-80s...up to 25 more 738s at least.
I remember when the first 20 MD-80s were ordered in 1984...they were intended to replace the 727-100s, while in 1994, the 738s were intended to replace the 727-200s. Times sure has changed everything around. Regards.
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dolphinflyer
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:50 pm

You raise a great point. I was thinking of that recently, as I find it interesting that other carriers like Spirit and Alaska Airlines are trying to retire their MD80 fleets as soon as possible due to their relative fuel inefficiency when compared with other narrowbody a/c. My guess is that AA is waiting for Boeing to launch a narrowbody version of its 787 a/c - a composite-made, single-piece frame. That should be forthcoming within the next several years.
 
vegasplanes
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 1:52 am

Quoting FlagshipAZ (Reply 15):
I remember when the first 20 MD-80s were ordered in 1984...they were intended to replace the 727-100s, while in 1994, the 738s were intended to replace the 727-200s. Times sure has changed everything around. Regards.

The aircraft were ordered from McDD in Sept. 1982, the first was delivered in May 1983. The initial order was to lease 20 planes for 5 years and see how they work out. Seems liked it worked out pretty good. Yes, they did replace the 727-100 with MD-80's.
 
MaxQ2351
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 5:04 am

Quoting Vegasplanes (Reply 17):
The initial order was to lease 20 planes for 5 years and see how they work out.

I never knew this!! I guess it worked out just okay!! From 20 airframes to...what was it, 328?? Even if you don't count the TWA airframes, that's still over 200!!
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vegasplanes
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 8:14 am

Quoting MaxQ2351 (Reply 18):
!! From 20 airframes to...what was it, 328??

AA originally purchased 250 or 260 total from McDD. The rest are TWA aircraft. The Reno Air planes are all parked IIRC.
 
highflyer9790
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 8:32 am

to my knowledge, AAs MD-80s are not trouble makers-as in they are still in relatively good shape. eventually one would imagine they would be phased out, i predict replaced by the 737NG (-800 or 900)

my  twocents 
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steeler83
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 9:50 am

Quoting Highflyer9790 (Reply 20):
to my knowledge, AAs MD-80s are not trouble makers-as in they are still in relatively good shape. eventually one would imagine they would be phased out, i predict replaced by the 737NG (-800 or 900)

Then you agree with me?  Smile

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 6):
For the MD-80 I can see at the very newest a 738 or even a 739ER. Just my "twocents"

Although the "er" part I suppose wouldn't be necessary as this would be mostly for transcon flights I am sure, as well as for flights like ORD-LAX/SFO or something of the type...
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swissy
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RE: AA's MD-80 Replacement?

Wed Apr 05, 2006 10:25 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 1):
AA could pull an NW DC-9, or replace the MD-80s with the 737RS.

How about replaced them with NW's DC9???? Big grin

But I think too most of these frames are still young (compare to the DC9) and
AA did push some 737 deliveries back, based on that I believe there are no
short term replacements plans by AA for the Mad Doggies...........

Cheers,