Max Q
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:43 am

There are persistent rumours of a significant new Aircraft order comprising narrow and widebodys



Management is not letting any details out.



Any one have any info ?
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
 
tinosky
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:48 am

C-Series would be nice... dont think it will happen though.

Tinosky,
 
jfk777
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:49 am

Smisek is a Boeing guy, I would bet on Seattle unless Airbus is just giving them away.
 
roseflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:59 am

I would expect a very thorough analysis and sales campaign between the 737MAX and A320NEO is going on. For the interim, they are settled on the 737NG as they have about 20 737-900ERs scheduled for delivery this year.

What happens with the new fleet is up to Boeing and Airbus marketing teams. I could see it going either way. The airline works with both the A320 and 737NG. I think the best product on the best terms to fit their needs will win.

I really hope this doesn't turn into a flame war A vs B. CO had a strong history with Boeing and yes their former CEO is in charge, but the airline's management is a combination of both. The board is also a combination of both. The former UA showed an interest in finding the best product for their needs and was equally willing to go to both Boeing or Airbus. I would assume the same is still true, because I don't think a combined board, executive and management team is going to go away from logical plan of buying what their analysis shows as best for the company regardless of manufacturer towards what many bias supporters of one side of the other may think is best for them.

This is a really tough one to predict as it easily could go either way. Price, availability, operation costs, maintenance support, and other factors all play a role.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
Dornier328Jet
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:12 am

I honestly would expect a split order. Unless this is a small order, my money would be on UA taking both the NEO and the MAX.
 
fleabyte
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:37 am

I hear that UA/CAL have shifted some 737-800 to domestic and many ex TED A320 to Latin America, that is ominous for Boeing.
 
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DocLightning
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:38 am

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
Smisek is a Boeing guy, I would bet on Seattle unless Airbus is just giving them away.

I thought that they just ordered a bunch of planes from both companies.

Smisek is not a dictator, he's a CEO. He has a lot of say, but it's not just his whim.

Frankly, if the order is large, neither A nor B will have the production capacity to fill it all, given the size of the new monstrosit...er...airline   so they will have to split the order. By the time you are ordering, say, 100 A320's, the advantages of economy of scale go rapidly diminish as the order goes to 200, 300, etc. It makes much more sense to split a fleet of, say, 300 aircraft than to split a fleet of 30.
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drerx7
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:50 am

Quoting fleabyte (Reply 5):
I hear that UA/CAL have shifted some 737-800 to domestic and many ex TED A320 to Latin America, that is ominous for Boeing.

Where do you see that - here in Houston its still 737 South...and in the forseeable future unless you see something on the schedules that we don't?
Third Coast born, means I'm Texas raised
 
ikramerica
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:53 am

Smiseck is a beancounting lawyer. Means he has no allegiance to anyone, thing or standard and will argue any point if the money's right.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
LAXintl
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:56 am

Its actually no secret – prior to the merger United publically stated it was in the process of defining a narrow body order to replace the 757 fleet, and early Airbii.

With the imminent merger the review was put on hold, but picked back up late last year as manufacturers defined their new products.

So yes, there will certainly be an order forthcoming – now a larger one for the combined UACH.

Additionally prior to the merger – UA was also even looking at large props, so I would not be surprised for the carrier to wade into other forms of equipment as well potentially.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
mogandoCI
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:59 am

They need a lot :

1. A320 replacement (at this point, probably Max or Neo)
2. More 787s to replace 767s and to expand.
3. True 744 replacement (the 359 is far from that). A350-1000 is bare minimum for that.
4. Long-term solution to high capacity domestic flights.
5. Maybe something to replace to 762 (but nothing really suitable out there)
 
ikramerica
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:00 am

Now the happy surprise would be a 777NG or 748 or A380 order thrown in the mix. I don't think 787s and A359s are going to cut it long term to replace all aircraft.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
ikramerica
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:03 am

Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 10):
5. Maybe something to replace to 762 (but nothing really suitable out there)

788s will do that. No other options.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
SonomaFlyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:18 am

788's replace 762's and there are only eight in the fleet now and will be gone soon.

UA has stated repeatedly the 359's are straight up replacements for the 744's. I don't know why folks keep theorizing otherwise when he's stated and restated that fact a number of times.

They'll likely split the order on the narrow bodies and be in the neighborhood of 200 frames with a flex mix of 73Max and 32NEO's. Given they are in the process of renovating their current Airbus fleet, expect the frames to be delivered starting in six or so years time. The CO 738's are relatively new and they are still taking 739ER's through this year or 2013.

For additional wide bodies, things get interesting. They have tons of 787's on order with options which could be a mix of any of the 787 variants. UA could be a launch customer for the 777MAX but given they are trying to tamp down capacity, its likely too big for what they want given their stated intention to take the 359's. The 388 is too big and I tend to doubt they'd be in the market for the 330. That leaves them doing the 777Max or increasing their orders on the 787 or 359.

I'd love to see them take the 748 and I'm sure Boeing would give them a terrific price but UA is trending away from quad jets.
 
mogandoCI
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:39 am

Quoting SonomaFlyer (Reply 13):
UA has stated repeatedly the 359's are straight up replacements for the 744's. I don't know why folks keep theorizing otherwise when he's stated and restated that fact a number of times.

Because replacing 744 with something 25% smaller is just leaving money on the table.

Not theorizing but hoping they'd do something more sensible.
 
laca773
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:58 am

Quoting fleabyte (Reply 5):
I hear that UA/CAL have shifted some 737-800 to domestic and many ex TED A320 to Latin America, that is ominous for Boeing.

Are you thinking of the PMUA flights from LAX/SFO-MEX/SJD/PVR/CUN which are flown with A319/A320s? These are the only routes south of the border I know of that are flown with Airbus equipment (perhaps ORD/IAD-MEX/CUN/SJD?). I think we'll see these PMUA flights become 73Gs for commonality with PMCO's large existence in Mexico and Central America.

I think we'll see 739ERs continue to replace the older 757 girls on domestic, trans/midcon flying. Another order for more 788/789s to replace the older 763ERs as well as add new markets requiring more range but lower capacity.

Is the A319 a better perfoming a/c over the 737(G)? For the most part, we know the 73H has better performance over the A320s (on transcons at least).

I'd still like to see UA order the 77W to replace those senior 744s, but do know what has been conveyed in regards to the A359.
 
splitterz
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:34 am

Quoting laca773 (Reply 15):
Are you thinking of the PMUA flights from LAX/SFO-MEX/SJD/PVR/CUN which are flown with A319/A320s? These are the only routes south of the border I know of that are flown with Airbus equipment (perhaps ORD/IAD-MEX/CUN/SJD?). I think we'll see these PMUA flights become 73Gs for commonality with PMCO's large existence in Mexico and Central America.

The now run EWR-SXM daily I believe on an A320.
 
bigb
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:40 am

Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 14):
Because replacing 744 with something 25% smaller is just leaving money on the table.

Not theorizing but hoping they'd do something more sensible.

You know this how?
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roseflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:49 am

There are 16 a320s that are equipped for overwater flights and specifically for the Caribbean. The fact that they have a smaller F cabin makes perfect sense for them to be used there and put the 738s with live tv and more F seats on domestic routes. It says nothing about a future order.

I also don't know why people think smisek is so pro Boeing. He was CEO for five months prior to the merger. He has a legal and finicial background so i don't know where people get the idea that he is pro Boeing other than the fact Bethune was and hand picked smisek to be general counsel.

[Edited 2012-02-09 20:55:55]
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rotating14
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:46 am

The CEOof Delta brought up a good point about why he's holding onto frames he has now and is squeezing every ounce of life out of them before he has to order more. What caught my attention was his comment about the VLA segment. I believe CO will adopt the same philosophy and go more towards twins, as far as widebodies are concerned.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=X&q=htt...AFQjCNEcyuWLcJQpx_DQ4Cd1KWNf7eSj3A
 
Asiaflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:46 am

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
Smisek is a Boeing guy, I would bet on Seattle unless Airbus is just giving them away.

He works for United, doesn't he?

Quoting ikramerica (Reply 8):
Smiseck is a beancounting lawyer. Means he has no allegiance to anyone, thing or standard and will argue any point if the money's right.

I hope you are right!  
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Max Q
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 6:10 am

Quoting rotating14 (Reply 19):


The CEOof Delta brought up a good point about why he's holding onto frames he has now and is squeezing every ounce of life out of them before he has to order more. What caught my attention was his comment about the VLA segment. I believe CO will adopt the same philosophy and go more towards twins, as far as widebodies are concerned.

AA made a similar gamble by holding on to hundreds of MD80's far too long and that didn't work out too well.


While US airlines can't be replacing Airframes like SIA, they need to balance very carefully getting their money's worth out of an Aircraft while keeping ahead of ever increasing fuel prices with efficient new models.



A true VLA replacement for the B744 is still in the cards for UAL.
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windshear
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:13 am

Quoting fleabyte (Reply 5):
ominous for Boeing.

What do you mean by this?
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CHRISBA777ER
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 9:36 am

Rumours. They'll say anything anyone wants them to, and Lord knows there are a lot of wanters on this site.

IF they are making an order, then I'd see the following.

A320NEO and 737MAX split order for NBs. Nothing smaller than A320/738 size.

777NG for widebody. Not to replace the A359s but to supplement them. 77W-size the perfect fit for their T/P ops, A359 the perfect fit for the widebody T/A stuff. Room to change where suitable. A359/77WNG the ideal pairing I think.

748i / A388 not a cat in hell's chance.
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
 
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Schweigend
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 9:47 am

Quoting fleabyte (Reply 5):
I hear that UA/CAL have shifted some 737-800 to domestic and many ex TED A320 to Latin America, that is ominous for Boeing.
Quoting windshear (Reply 22):
What do you mean by this?

I think he means that, while CO used to be all-Boeing, the new UA entity could re-up part of its narrowbody fleet with Airbus planes, now that they're discovering how good Airbus products are...ominous for Boeing, who now must compete harder for UA's business.

Let's see how the A321NEO and the 739MAX match up in the real world. UA obviously will need something to replace the 757, whether its the 739 or the 321. This will be a real contest. given how UA uses its 757s across the Atlantic.

Cloud-cuckoo talk now, I'd love to see UA order a dozen new 767-322ERs.
 
na
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 10:53 am

If UA wouldnt order 748I or A380 soon or in coming years, it would be a sign of surrender, a sign that the US airline industry doesnt belong to the top anymore. I dont see why they should be interested in new 777s at all. Their aging 772 fleet will most likely be replaced by 787s, and for the size below a possible VLA they have decided for the A350. If no VLA now, then it´ll be the A350-1000 for sure. Stupid to have 777s, when the have the more modern 787s and A350 are all battling for the same market in the fleet already. But its important to have VLAs to compete with the world leaders.
 
columba
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:03 am

Quoting na (Reply 25):
If UA wouldnt order 748I or A380 soon or in coming years, it would be a sign of surrender, a sign that the US airline industry doesnt belong to the top anymore.

Agreed, airlines from all over the world Asia, Australia, Africa and Europe fly to the US using VLAs so US airlines should be able to fill them as well. Here is to a UA 747-8I order, would be a great looking bird
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CHRISBA777ER
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:14 am

Quoting columba (Reply 26):

No - thats nonsense. Sorry.

It just means that they have crunched the numbers and found that low-CASM big twins make more sense for the frequency-driven US consumer for the routes they want to run them on. It also means that they cannot justify the massive pricetag premium the big VLA quads have over ther twins, and have done their marketing research and found that the American customer doesnt really care about going on the new 747 or the A380 in the same way the Singaporean or Korean etc customer does.

Not everyone has to have a VLA.

Just because another airline can fill them profitably doesnt mean everyone can or should. Even if the traffic is there it is not always the best option. Its a very good option a lot of the time and in some cases an unbeatable option, but not all things to all men and in some cases unsuitable.

[Edited 2012-02-10 03:16:22]
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
 
CHRISBA777ER
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:20 am

Quoting na (Reply 25):
But its important to have VLAs to compete with the world leaders.

Nonsense. Only the MEG carriers buy planes to "keep up with the Joneses" - UAL doesnt have to keep up with anyone. They are massively strong at their hubs and have nothing to prove. They are very good at what they do.

Quoting na (Reply 25):
I dont see why they should be interested in new 777s at all.

I'd suggest the 777NG development team in Seattle would be a little surprised at your comment here.

Quoting na (Reply 25):
If no VLA now, then it´ll be the A350-1000 for sure.

Or a 77WNG.

Quoting na (Reply 25):
Stupid to have 777s, when the have the more modern 787s and A350 are all battling for the same market in the fleet already.

What about if the 787s and A350s offer 12% better CASM, but cost $150m+ each and your 777s are fully paid off or on very low lease rates? Not stupid at all.

[Edited 2012-02-10 03:23:15]
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
 
na
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:27 am

Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
I'd suggest the 777NG development team in Seattle would be a little surprised at your comment here.

Didnt you understand? I said new 777s make no sense if you have ordered 787s (for the smaller part of the 777 market niche) and A350s (for the niche above, but underneath the VLA) already.

Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
What about if the 787s and A350s offer 12% better CASM, but cost $150m+ each and your 777s are fully paid off or on very low lease rates? Not stupid at all.

You refer to the aging 777s they have and most of which surely will stay for most of this decade. They are a legitimate object for a replacement order now though.

Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
Nonsense. Only the MEG carriers buy planes to "keep up with the Joneses" - UAL doesnt have to keep up with anyone. They are massively strong at their hubs and have nothing to prove. They are very good at what they do.

If they want to be a big player and offer the best product, they have to. Nonsense to say the A380 isnt a superior carriage than smaller planes. If UA wants to be among the best, they will need A380/748I. If they cant fill them, they dont belong to the world leading airlines anymore. Period.
 
Daysleeper
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:31 am

I’d have thought they would do similar to AA, but given that they already have the 739 as a 752 replacement I’m not so sure. So with that in mind and the fact there is still a lot of the 1000 commitments for the Max unaccounted for, I’d say they are likely to go Boeing for the narrow body’s and maybe, just maybe, the A35J for widebody’s.

I’d of course love them to order the A380, or if they really want to stand out from the crowd the 748I – but I doubt it.  
 
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PM
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:42 am

Quoting na (Reply 25):
If UA wouldnt order 748I or A380 soon or in coming years, it would be a sign of surrender, a sign that the US airline industry doesnt belong to the top anymore.
Quoting columba (Reply 26):
Agreed, airlines from all over the world Asia, Australia, Africa and Europe fly to the US using VLAs so US airlines should be able to fill them as well.

Utter nonsense.

In the 1990s when I lived in Switzerland and my wife worked for Swissair an SR 747 pilot at a party told me that no airline without 747s could be considered a first rank airline. I told him then that was bollocks and it still is. I wonder what he's flying now. A330s, I suppose. Airlines are businesses, not willy-waving contests.
 
JoeCanuck
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:57 am

Quoting PM (Reply 31):

Dead right. Airlines buy what will make them the most money...period. They really don't care what some consider their rankings to be. The PR folks might like to crow about being number whatever but the beancounters don't...and they buy the planes.
What the...?
 
CHRISBA777ER
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:05 pm

Quoting na (Reply 29):
Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
I'd suggest the 777NG development team in Seattle would be a little surprised at your comment here.

Didnt you understand? I said new 777s make no sense if you have ordered 787s (for the smaller part of the 777 market niche) and A350s (for the niche above, but underneath the VLA) already.

UACO have ordered 788s and A359s - new 77Ws or 77WNGs make a lot of sense as neither of the aforementioned aiframes are anything like as large or capable. I dont see whats so nonsensical about that?

Quoting na (Reply 29):
Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
What about if the 787s and A350s offer 12% better CASM, but cost $150m+ each and your 777s are fully paid off or on very low lease rates? Not stupid at all.

You refer to the aging 777s they have and most of which surely will stay for most of this decade. They are a legitimate object for a replacement order now though.

Yes, but they dont HAVE to replace them yet. The absolute eldest 777-222As will be 20 years old in mid-2015, and they can soldier on for a lot longer than 20 years. The bulk of the 224s and the 222ERs were 1998-2000 deliveries so no need to do anything with them for some time yet. They are still very capable and a cabin refresh etc will keep them competitive.

I agree they'll need replacing eventually, but the decision to replace 60+ 777s with more A359s or 789/10s at $150m+ a pop (especially in the current economic environment) is not one to take on a whim. There are several more pressing areas of the combined fleet that need much more urgent renewal, and as stated above, the 772s are still very capable and will remain so. The finance/lease cost alone of the new airframes should keep the paid-off/low-lease rate 777 fleets competitive.

Quoting na (Reply 29):
Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
Nonsense. Only the MEG carriers buy planes to "keep up with the Joneses" - UAL doesnt have to keep up with anyone. They are massively strong at their hubs and have nothing to prove. They are very good at what they do.

If they want to be a big player and offer the best product, they have to. Nonsense to say the A380 isnt a superior carriage than smaller planes. If UA wants to be among the best, they will need A380/748I. If they cant fill them, they dont belong to the world leading airlines anymore. Period.

Yes, the A380 is a superior ride to anything out there right now, but have you flown on a 787 yet? How good do you think the A350 is going to be? Likewise the 777NG?

Not disputing UACO can fill a VLA - of course they can. But can they make more money doing more flights with smaller low-CASM twins with their mega/multi hub business model and frequency-driven loyal customer base?

Truth is neither one of us knows for sure.

What I do know is that not a single soul at UACO is in the slightest bit bothered about whether the airline is considered "amongst the best". They arent a Cathay, a Korean or a Singapore and thats not what they are trying to be. Keeping afloat in tough economic times and trying to improve/align its product with the target US market is the name of the game and they are pretty busy with that I'd say. I'd suggest that regardless of how much you love the A380 - and i do too - if UACO took delivery of them tomorrow, I;d still choose an SQ 77W or NH 772ER SFO-NRT over a UA A380. There's an awful lot more to being a world class airline - and being considered by the traveling public to be one - than just the metal you fly.

Your average person couldnt give a monkeys whether the wings were built in Wales or Seattle or whether it says airbus or Boeing on the side. But give them an inferior hard product or poorer soft product than the competition, yes you'd better believe they'll notice.

For what its worth i like UA's C class product - and they are certainly the only US major I'd voluntarily fly with my own £££s but ive usually got a choice, and even a massive plane geek like me will choose price/product over plane any day.
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
 
mikey72
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:14 pm

I want to see big shiny 748i's in UA livery. AA livery. DL livery..hell any American carrier.

Fat chance.

I would be amazed if the first American order for a wide-body four engined aircraft went to Airbus and not Boeing...even if the A380 ran on whipped cream !!



 

She's a beauty.

[Edited 2012-02-10 04:17:55]
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AAIL86
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:24 pm

Quoting mikey72 (Reply 34):
I want to see big shiny 748i's in UA livery. AA livery. DL livery..hell any American carrier.

US Airways, then??????  
The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason - Benjamim Franklin
 
Candid76
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:51 pm

A big split narrowbody order along the lines of American is the most likely outcome in my view. Two reasons in particular, firstly there are plenty of qualified A320 family pilots and mechanics who will be easier to transition to NEO aircraft than to MAX, which must have a cost benefit, and secondly United has quite a few A320 family aircraft still on order, so it would make sense to order a batch of NEOs and cancel the outstanding A319 and A320 orders once and for all as part of that new deal. So assuming that the profitability potential of both types is broadly similar, and each type is potentially a little better than the other for certain missions in the UA network, I'd wager on a split deal.
 
idlewildchild
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:08 pm

Considering the US economy, UA being Chicago based and the politics of the day, we can be certain that they'll be strong political pressures to, at the minimum, split any buy between B & A. United must consider the average American's thinking and feeling as they attempt to position themselves as the largest airline in the world (world, right?) representing the USA.

Having said that I have no idea what UA will do, if there is in fact a large buy coming. I know I prefer B for long haul and I prefer A for shorter so I'm fine with a split purchase.
 
mogandoCI
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:13 pm

Quoting BigB (Reply 17):
You know this how?

Please list major global carriers who replaced 744s *directly* with planes smaller than 77W/346 and not going through financial hardship.
 
mikey72
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:14 pm

Quoting AAIL86 (Reply 36):
Quoting mikey72 (Reply 34):
I want to see big shiny 748i's in UA livery. AA livery. DL livery..hell any American carrier.

US Airways, then??????

Yeah them too.
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kc135topboom
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:14 pm

Quoting Schweigend (Reply 24):
I think he means that, while SA)">CO used to be all-Boeing, the new SA)">UA entity could re-up part of its narrowbody fleet with Airbus planes, now that they're discovering how good Airbus products are...ominous for Boeing, who now must compete harder for SA)">UA's business.

Just how good are those A-32Xs? We don't know how SA)">UA compares the B-737NGs to the A-32Xs. The Airbus airplanes are older than most of the Boeing airplanes.

Quoting Schweigend (Reply 24):
Let's see how the A321NEO and the 739MAX match up in the real world. SA)">UA obviously will need something to replace the 757, whether its the 739 or the 321. This will be a real contest. given how SA)">UA uses its 757s across the Atlantic.

They don't need to do that, SA)">UA has 36 B-788s (and 50 options) on order to cover the B-762, B-752, and B-763 replacement. They also have a number of B-789s on order, but I forgot how many.

Quoting na (Reply 29):
Quoting CHRISBA777ER (Reply 28):
Nonsense. Only the MEG carriers buy planes to "keep up with the Joneses" - UAL doesnt have to keep up with anyone. They are massively strong at their hubs and have nothing to prove. They are very good at what they do.

If they want to be a big player and offer the best product, they have to. Nonsense to say the A380 isnt a superior carriage than smaller planes. If SA)">UA wants to be among the best, they will need A380/748I. If they cant fill them, they dont belong to the world leading airlines anymore. Period.

SA)">UA, SA)">DL, SA)">AA, SA)">WN, and US all build their business case around frequency, not capacity. None of them have anything bigger than the B-77W or A-333 in their fleets or on order, except the B-744s operated by SA)">UA and SA)">DL. SA)">UA has stated that their A-359 order is their B-744 replacement airplane. But their B-744s are 400 seaters, and the A-359 is at best a 350 seater (2 class). The current B-77W seats up to 450 in 2 classes, or 365 in 3 classes. SA)">DL, OTOH will probibly fly the wings off their B-744s before they consider a replacement. SA)">UA has a current fleet of about 700 airplanes and has the second largest fleet in the world. SA)">DL is the largest with about 710 airplanes, SA)">AA has about 610 airplanes, and US has about 350 airplanes (WN has about 560 airplanes, all B-737s).

With fleets of those sizes, and EU, Asian, ME, African, SA, and South Pacific airlines having fleets that number in the 200-400 aircraft range how many, if any, VLAs would the American airlines need? I would say the size of the airline, more so than the size of the airplane defines what a 'world class airline' is.
 
mogandoCI
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:21 pm

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 41):
A-359 is at best a 350 seater (2 class).

350 seats is probably a low-J config ... the A359 is approx size of the 772, so a realistic configuration (say 40-50J) would bring the seat count closer to 270-290, a major shrink from 744.
 
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kgaiflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:25 pm

Quoting ikramerica (Reply 8):
Smiseck is a beancounting lawyer. Means he has no allegiance to anyone, thing or standard and will argue any point if the money's right.

Whether that's true or not, United is not a privately-owned airline.

Therefore, this will not be a one-man decision.
 
scouseflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:28 pm

Quoting mikey72 (Reply 34):
I would be amazed if the first American order for a wide-body four engined aircraft went to Airbus and not Boeing...even if the A380 ran on whipped cream !!

Sorry to be a pedant but as I understand in the 1990s CO and NW both ordered the A340 but both orders were cancelled before delivery. Some others have also held options for A340s but never taken them up.
 
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kgaiflyer
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:38 pm

Quoting scouseflyer (Reply 44):
Sorry to be a pedant but as I understand in the 1990s CO and NW both ordered the A340

True.

And Houston was once an Airbus town
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STT757
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:52 pm

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 41):
They also have a number of B-789s on order, but I forgot how many.

14 787-9s, plus options.
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United1
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:02 pm

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 41):
Quoting Schweigend (Reply 24):
Let's see how the A321NEO and the 739MAX match up in the real world. SA)">UA obviously will need something to replace the 757, whether its the 739 or the 321. This will be a real contest. given how SA)">UA uses its 757s across the Atlantic.

They don't need to do that, SA)">UA has 36 B-788s (and 50 options) on order to cover the B-762, B-752, and B-763 replacement. They also have a number of B-789s on order, but I forgot how many.

I think the 788 might be a little large to replace the 752s...while UA does use them on some trunk routes where the 788 could take over for them the 788 is simply to large for some of the nitch routes that UA flies. I'm not sure how they are going to solve that one  

UAs current widebody order:
36 788
14 789
25 359

They also have options for 50 350s and 75 787s of any model.
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Stitch
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:05 pm

Quoting SonomaFlyer (Reply 13):
UA has stated repeatedly the 359's are straight up replacements for the 744's. I don't know why folks keep theorizing otherwise when he's stated and restated that fact a number of times.
Quoting mogandoCI (Reply 14):
Because replacing 744 with something 25% smaller is just leaving money on the table.

On a few routes a few weeks or months out of the year, that is true. But for the rest of the time, you're either flying with empty seats or your discounting to fill those seats, which drags your RASM down overall.

A UA 747-400 seats 374. Reports from the company state the A350-900 will seat 315. So that's only a 15% reduction in total seats, which is not a massive loss.

What will be massive, however, is the reduction in fuel burn. Perhaps over 40% if Airbus' claims come true.



Quoting rotating14 (Reply 19):
The CEOof Delta brought up a good point about why he's holding onto frames he has now and is squeezing every ounce of life out of them before he has to order more.
Quoting Max Q (Reply 21):
AA made a similar gamble by holding on to hundreds of MD80's far too long and that didn't work out too well.

And yet AA entered Bankruptcy in a significantly stronger position, with significant cash reserves that means they will exercise more self-determination in how they proceed through the process compared to DL or UA, both of whom required significant cash infusions and gave the debtors-in-possession more control.

That they did enter C11 with so much money on hand makes me believe the real reason they did it was to use the court to impose changes they couldn't secure by negotiation. But that's a discussion for the AA BK thread.



I agree that I don't think we will see an order for the A380-800 or the 747-8, but I would not say that we will never see such an order. But for now, I am in strong agreement with those that believe a 777-300ER / "777-300ERX" / A350-1000 is the better choice for their style of operations.

[Edited 2012-02-10 07:09:18]
 
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STT757
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:13 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 9):
Additionally prior to the merger – UA was also even looking at large props, so I would not be surprised for the carrier to wade into other forms of equipment as well potentially.

I would love to see an order for additional Q400s, with the First class cabins and E+ they offer a nice product, and are competitive with RJs in terms of flight times on routes up to 500 miles. There are a lot of routes up to 500 miles from DEN, ORD and LAX/SFO that could use something the size and with the economics of the Q400. Also an order for the ATR-42-600 and ATR-72-600 for routes up to 350 miles from IAD, ORD, IAH and LAX/SFO. This would help retire a good potion of the CRJs.
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mogandoCI
Posts: 1247
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New UAL Aircraft Order?

Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:29 pm

Quoting Stitch (Reply 48):
A UA 747-400 seats 374. Reports from the company state the A350-900 will seat 315. So that's only a 15% reduction in total seats, which is not a massive loss.

Isn't that an artificial bump in 359 numbers by chopping F and trimming J ?

Quoting Stitch (Reply 48):
On a few routes a few weeks or months out of the year, that is true. But for the rest of the time, you're either flying with empty seats or your discounting to fill those seats, which drags your RASM down overall.

Is UA flying that many empty seats around? Anecdotally, SFO-HKG pricing is always on par with SQ and CX despite having the worst hard product.

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