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FlyCaledonian
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A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:46 pm

I'll start off by saying that I'm not saying the A300/A310 were unsuccessful, and nor is this intended to a A v B bashing thread. What I'm interested in is why Boeing seemed able to better optimise the 767 (particularly the 767-300ER) for long-range ETOPS operations compared to Airbus with the A300/A310. As an example, you had an airline like BA who could use their 767-336ERs on a flight like MAN-LAX whilst when AA moved the A300-605R to TATL flights as it was phasing out the MD-11 was pretty much limited to using them on BOS-LHR, BOS-CDG and JFK-LHR due to range.

I know the A310-300 was intended as the longer range model and was used by Pan Am (and later DL before they switched to the 767-332ER), Air France, Air Portugal, SABENA and Air Transat amongst others. But that meant sacrificing capacity (being smaller compared to the A300) to get that range.

What specifically about the 767 made it more suitabe to be modified for use on long-range ETOPS flights that couldn't be done with the A300? And could Airbus have done anything to tap into that market with the A300? (Remembering that it wasn't until the A330-200 and then the A330-300E models that Airbus properly found a true long-range ETOPS twin).
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:09 pm

Can it be a matter of original design? The A300 was built as an air bus, meaning to carry lots of passengers on trunk routes, like Paris-London.

The 767 started with the -200s, which was smaller than all the previous wide-bodies, and perhaps conceived from the beginning to a long-range aircraft, remember both TWA and El Al launched early on long-haul flights with it, replacing in the process the 707s.

The A310 was Airbus' answer to the 767 (-200) with modified wings.

Airbus offered the A300-100/200, then the A300-600 or the A310-200 (not sure which one came first), then the A310-300 and A300-600R.

Boeing, for its part had the 767-200, then -200ER, followed by -300, later -300ER and finally the -400ER.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:20 pm

SpaceshipDC10 wrote:
Can it be a matter of original design? The A300 was built as an air bus, meaning to carry lots of passengers on trunk routes, like Paris-London.

The 767 started with the -200s, which was smaller than all the previous wide-bodies, and perhaps conceived from the beginning to a long-range aircraft, remember both TWA and El Al launched early on long-haul flights with it, replacing in the process the 707s.

The A310 was Airbus' answer to the 767 (-200) with modified wings.

Airbus offered the A300-100/200, then the A300-600 or the A310-200 (not sure which one came first), then the A310-300 and A300-600R.

Boeing, for its part had the 767-200, then -200ER, followed by -300, later -300ER and finally the -400ER.


To add: The A300 was 1960-technology, the 767 1970-technology - A300 first flight 1972, 767 1981.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:10 pm

The A310 was born of Airbus recognition that the market desired a wide-body with fewer seats than the A300, hence it was not an "answer to the 767" per se. The inputs from the (then) limited customer base for the A300 convinced Airbus management to design the A310-200 for regional operations. As a result the proposed all-new wing area was scaled back, This reduced the available integral fuel capacity which hampered later efforts to develop competitive longer range versions. With the 757 to satisfy domestic US/Regional markets, Boeing gave the 767 a bigger wing, with a view to facilitating the stretch models that came later.

In a sense it might be argued that this was a re-run of the HS Trident/Boeing 727 saga, where the former was designed with more modest capabilities to satisfy the prime customer then went on to struggle against a more polyvalent competitor.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:12 pm

It was down to the wing which was tailored for medium haul.... I saw a quote from a Airbus engineer saying they regretted not putting a bigger wing on the a310. In fact Airbus was quite close to launching a longer range twin called the ta12 sometime in the early 80s after the a310 entered service.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:47 pm

The A300 was optimized for the European market, which meant it had a fairly small wing because long range was not required. The Joe Sutter biography mentions his opinion on how its small wing limited its range. The 767 was later and was scoped to "one-up" the A300 in range and therefore had a larger wing and heavier weights (A300 was around 350 klbs MTOW give or take, 767 eventually passed 400 klbs). Both models made use of improved engines in the late 1970s and early 1980s (for example, CF6-50 moving to CF6-80 and JT9D moving to PW4000). Conversely, one could say the A330 was meant to beat the 767 (A330 max weights passed 500 klbs).

The A310 was a classic play out of the long range conversion playbook - drop fuselage frames while increasing the max weights (heavier landing gear, etc). This trades payload weight for fuel weight, thereby increasing range. Same approach as the L-1011-200 -> 500. It's a fairly low cost approach without having to do a major and expensive redesign, like the wing. But the cost is less capacity for longer range, and so the fuel cost per pax shoots up compared to the base model.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:06 pm

The A310 had an all-new wing, different engines and lower gross weights than the A300 so I don't believe it fits the "classic play" description.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:08 pm

767-200 and A310 are 7 month apart EIS wise ( 1982 Sept to 1983 April ).
using about the same engines 767 increased range via the smaller fuselage.
After the A310/A300-600 Airbus, then much smaller than today,
was busy with the A320 and its FBW toolbox.

"To add: The A300 was 1960-technology, the 767 1970-technology - A300 first flight 1972, 767 1981."

Aha. What I could gather the A300 and especially the A310 were rather competitive tech wise to the
767.
Last edited by WIederling on Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:20 pm

The A300 was the first twin-engine widebody, designed for short to medium haul routes and the beginning of Airbus success story :old:
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:33 pm

Wildlander wrote:
The A310 was born of Airbus recognition that the market desired a wide-body with fewer seats than the A300, hence it was not an "answer to the 767" per se. The inputs from the (then) limited customer base for the A300 convinced Airbus management to design the A310-200 for regional operations.


I wasn't specific enough in my reply, but indeed meant answer to the need for a smaller WB of more or less the same size as the 767.

Wildlander wrote:
The A310 had an all-new wing


Dubbed "super critical" or something akin?
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:35 pm

SpaceshipDC10 wrote:
Dubbed "super critical" or something akin?


Yes. Quite the step in aerodynamics. Evens out lift distribution over the wing. Allows more lift, less sweep for a wing with much less of the airflow going supersonic creating shock waves. Foundation to all further Airbus wings. still state of the art.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:43 pm

RalXWB wrote:
The A300 was the first twin-engine widebody, designed for short to medium haul routes and the beginning of Airbus success story :old:


True, but keep in mind that from the start it was designed as a short/medium haul aircraft. The range of the first A300 was less than the range of an A320 nowadays. The 767-200 from the very beginning had a higher range. Of course over time Airbus did increase the range of the A300/A310, but so did Boeing with the 767. Overall the 767 always had the image of a higher range than the A300/A310.

Nowadays we hardly see any widebodies on short/medium haul routes, the market the A300 was designed for. They're all down to 737/A320 with only very few exceptions. I'd say the A300 was too big for the market it was aiming at. By increasing it's range they tried to shift it to another market, but this was only properly done with the introduction of the A330. The first true long-haul Airbus.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 9:01 pm

PatrickZ80 wrote:

Nowadays we hardly see any widebodies on short/medium haul routes, the market the A300 was designed for. They're all down to 737/A320 with only very few exceptions. I'd say the A300 was too big for the market it was aiming at. By increasing it's range they tried to shift it to another market, but this was only properly done with the introduction of the A330. The first true long-haul Airbus.

While true perhaps for N America, most A330 flights everywhere else are less than 2000 miles.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 9:28 pm

The A300 was not designed for long-haul. Its target were trunk routes between London, Frankfurt, Paris and similar metros. It was a european jet designed for european customers, so even US transcon flights were too far for the initial version. One might consider that short-sighted but remember that ETOPS was only introduced in 1985, 13 years after the A300's first flight, following strong pressure by Boeing. Many launch customers, e. g. AF and LH, used the A300 for short haul, trijets for medium haul and quads for long haul. The A300 was also the first twin widebody and, being only 2 years younger than the DC-10, would likely have run into thrust problems with heavier weights. The A300-600R was 10% lighter empty than the 767-300 despite having one more seat per row at the same length.

They probably could have gone with a larger wing and more fuel capacity on the A310 but remember that back then Airbus' largest customers were precisely the european airlines. By the time the A310 was launched only 81 A300 had been built. Their influence on the decisionmaking process was obvious.

Then there was Boeing's advantage of having a more diverse line-up with the 757/767 combo. They were strikingly similar in capacity but equally different in range. The clear roles made it easier to focus and optimise the designs. Both programs, however, suffered from the stretch arriving very late.

Being later born additionally helped the 767, as it was launched with a two-man cockpit, whereas the A300 used a flight engineer for quite some time. It did get a digital two-crew cockpit eventually, though.

Finally, when Airbus was looking at future developments many customers urged them to go for a larger airplane with much more range, leading to the A330/A340 combo. They did not want an A300+ or NEO. By effectively creating an A300 replacement with much more improvement potential any incentive to further develop the A300 was lost. By the time freighter production was stopped in 2007 the A300 was old and overcome by the 767F and the upcoming A330F. Boeing on the other hand decided to make the 777 so large and heavy that there was still room for the 767 beneath it. Once the A330-200 arrived, though, the 767 struggled to gain new orders. It is only still in production because the US tanker program keeps it alive and because there is next to zero competition in the medium-sized freighter market.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:26 pm

"The A300-600R was 10% lighter empty than the 767-300 despite having one more seat per row at the same length."

Another interesting metric: A330-200 is ~15% larger than the 767-300 has much more OEW but only needs 7..8% more fuel.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:32 pm

It was mentioned in an earlier thread that maintenance costs on the A300 were significantly higher than the 767

viewtopic.php?t=343893
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:51 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
It was mentioned in an earlier thread that maintenance costs on the A300 were significantly higher than the 767

viewtopic.php?t=343893


see posting #10 over there.
( would be nice to have the original article available.
we've seen enough other strange comparisons around.)
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:58 am

WIederling wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
It was mentioned in an earlier thread that maintenance costs on the A300 were significantly higher than the 767

viewtopic.php?t=343893


see posting #10 over there.
( would be nice to have the original article available.
we've seen enough other strange comparisons around.)


Here is a thread discussing how terrible the A300s were for Continental regarding maintenance


viewtopic.php?t=255295
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:28 am

The a300 had one of the highest dispatch reliability and ease of maintanence of any aircraft at that time .... I suggest searching flightglobal's archive.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:38 am

The 300 were certainly not terrible as regards to maintenance. In this case it was caused by EAL nightmarish maintenance, has nothing to do with the airplane and it still does not change the fact that the 300 was the first twin-engine widebody.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:47 am

And the first Airbus and one that was designed largely by committee to get the project started. The Airbus of that time is not the Airbus of today. Not the firm eye to eye with Boeing with similar support, marketing and experience but the new player on the block with one product and far behind the big players in the market like Boeing or McDD. When Airbus became a big player, the A300/A310 were already old.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:55 am

RalXWB wrote:
The 300 were certainly not terrible as regards to maintenance. In this case it was caused by EAL nightmarish maintenance, has nothing to do with the airplane and it still does not change the fact that the 300 was the first twin-engine widebody.

The thread also says CO's maintenance is nightmarish, with spare parts stored in GSO where the A300s never frequented.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:15 am

Airbus was launched around the new concept of the A300.Literaly an Air-Bus.Nice idea just -as it turned out-dead wrong.It turned out people wanted frequency and destination flexibility.Hence the A320 but the original co name stuck.
As for the A310.I am not sure why they didn't just shrink the A300 and keep the existing (larger) wing -unless it wasn't that good (I have no knowledge on that).
It is true (for its day) that the all new A310 wing was a masterpiece.Probably still pretty good.Oddly enough the A310 sounds (to me) exactly what Boeing are proposing for the new 2025 MOM -how things change!
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:16 am

I lived in Kuwait starting 1994, and flew all of KU's planes over the years - including their 5 x A300s and 3 x A310s. Wonderful aircraft, and I'd like to think that they contributed to my preference of Airbus over Boeing when given the choice.

Of course, toward the end they got a little tatty but that's no harm to Airbus's reputation, it was just age by the time I took my last flight on them in Jan 2013 (9K-ALC, KWI-MAA).

Don't know about CO. Speaks more about them than the manufacturer if they were the only ones who were experiencing problems with them.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:41 am

ap305 wrote:
The a300 had one of the highest dispatch reliability and ease of maintanence of any aircraft at that time .... I suggest searching flightglobal's archive.


I agree, ours flew 24/7 non stop and I found them extremely reliable. They were also miles ahead of Boeing and I suppose those who complained were like those old timers going from piston aircraft to jets, they moaned like hell :)
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:13 am

ETOPS is the answer.

The A300 was conceived before ETOPS, nobody thought about doing transoceanic flights with twins at the time, certainly not at Boeing, Lockheed or MDD either.

BTW as a teen in the 90's I flew A300s CDG-FRA-MUC return, really like an air bus, with my school so a group of teens, it was really great. More recently I flew an A300-600R CDG-TUN, much better than on a narrowbody. Same thing with a 767 CDG-CMN, usually a 737, nicer experience in a widebody for sure.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:43 am

IIRC the 767's American launch customers specified the ability to operate transcontinental flights from LGA's 7'000 ft runways...hence the 767's rather generous wing compared to the contemporaneous A310 which was not initially designed for longer-range missions...even the heavier 767-200ER had a maximum wing loading of 127 lbs/ft^2 against the A310-300's maximum of 153 lbs/ft^2...a very significant difference of 20% lower wing loading for the 767...they were fudamentally different airliners in that respect...with the 767 having much more growth potential as witnessed by the -300ER and -400...and this growth potential translated quite naturally into higher sales...to the point that United is presently looking to buy up to 60 more -300ER frames...


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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:34 am

Faro wrote:
... hence the 767's rather generous wing compared to the contemporaneous A310 which was not initially designed for longer-range missions...even the heavier 767-200ER had a maximum wing loading of 127 lbs/ft^2 against the A310-300's maximum of 153 lbs/ft^2...a very significant difference of 20% lower wing loading for the 767...


The supercritical profile due to its more even lift distribution allowed higher wing loading. Everybody has it today.
.. and the reason ( together with no FBW ) why NEOing the 767 does not make sense.
There is an interesting article around from Flight International ( EIS timeframe 1982/3 ).
one from this search:
https://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive ... &x=29&y=11
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:40 am

Lots of 'not-so-correct' things are being said over this forum.. where to begin?
Let's just say that in the 1980s the A310 was not at all a direct response to the 767...the A310 was developed more or less around the time Boeing was studying its twins (757/767) and Airbus was busy preparing an optimized and scaled down version of the A300 at the request of some European airlines, which would have had a long range variant from day one.
The A310 incorporated very advanced technology and was perceived as a very refined airliner - to some extent it was seen as more advanced as the 767. In the eye of the frequent traveler of the late '80s it would have been the A310 the 'better' and more established long-range performer of the two. The 767-200ER was less common than the A310-300 initially, and the better 767-300ER hit the market a tad later than the A310-300 (around two years?), and the vast majority of large European airlines used the A310-300 on long range missions from day one... SR, AF, LH, SN, TP...and that would have been circa 1985/86... so in perspective, at that time, the A310 was perceived as a very successful programme...
Those who have flown the A310 also know how comfortable the aircraft was: the wide fuselage and low cabin noise levels made it more appealing to passengers than the 767. Pan American even went on to claim that they offered a fleet of "the only wide-body that can offer 747 comfort".
Orders flocked from all four corners of the world..Air India, Wardair, Thai, Singapore Airlines, Nigeria Airways, Air Afrique, martinair, KLM, Thai Airways, CAAC,Royal Jordanian, Turkish and even Interflug, and later Aeroflot (!) and CSA. I mean, it's easy now to discount the aircraft given that it's all but erased from commercial aviation, but to someone who has 'lived' aviation in the '80s and '90s, I can tell you that the A310 would have easily been seen as superior and even more successful that the 767... the 767 was mostly seen (initially at least, don't kill me) as a 'purely US transcon' machine... In Europe it was the 757 that was perceived as a more successful design, and the one that flew alongside the A310 on the busy intra-European schedules. The 767 mostly came to Europe as a long-hauler, in later years, and in the -300ER variant.. prior to that it would be hard to say that the 767 was a popular aircraft in Europe -or for that in Asia-...The only dash200s in Europe I can think of are those of Britannia Airways... and none in Asia, with the exception of a few CAAC ones....
Then of course Boeing went on to 'optimise' the 767 programme, while Airbus decided to concentrate on their new family of long-rangers, the A330/A340, and the A310 was quietly dropped. The market decided that it needed not only more range, but specifically more capacity, hence why the A310 sort of died a quiet death.
So, to answer the original question of the OP: I would not compare the 767-300ER that could fly MAN-LAX, to an A300-600R -which was essentially a more advanced A300B4- which indeed could only fly the 'shorter' Atlantic routes, being in practice a warmed-up medium hauler from a previous generation... I would look more into the A310...now, that was a great north-Atlantic performer, and a very common one too in those days! Please also do note that size-wise the A310 almost perfectly matched the capacity of the 763, with an average (1990s or late '80s configurations - 8Y; 7 C/J ; 6F) of 220 seats in long-haul mixed classes, so precisely what a 763 would have been offering. The 762 was significantly smaller...
The fact that Airbus decided to opt for the A330 (size) and forget about a smaller size WB is another story. Only now is the market perhaps re-awakening to the fact that a medium-sized WB could be a palatable proposition....
Also, many people seems to be unaware of how popular was wide-body flying in Europe in the late '70s, '80s & '90s... Air France, Air Inter, AZ, LK, SN, KL, TP, IB, OA.. they all flew extensive domestic and international (intra-Europe) schedules with those big Airbuses, so those who thing that the air-bus concept was not successful...you are wrong guys! Do your research before saying anything so incorrect! It boggles the mind to think that so many European (now almost marginal) airports were served by wide-body flights, and that any given main "city pair" would have seen at least half of the daily rotations operated by Airbus twin-aisle jets!
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:11 pm

oldannyboy wrote:
Then of course Boeing went on to 'optimise' the 767 programme, while Airbus decided to concentrate on their new family of long-rangers, the A330/A340, and the A310 was quietly dropped. The market decided that it needed not only more range, but specifically more capacity, hence why the A310 sort of died a quiet death.
So, to answer the original question of the OP: I would not compare the 767-300ER that could fly MAN-LAX, to an A300-600R -which was essentially a more advanced A300B4- which indeed could only fly the 'shorter' Atlantic routes, being in practice a warmed-up medium hauler from a previous generation... I would look more into the A310...now, that was a great north-Atlantic performer, and a very common one too in those days! Please also do note that size-wise the A310 almost perfectly matched the capacity of the 763, with an average (1990s or late '80s configurations - 8Y; 7 C/J ; 6F) of 220 seats in long-haul mixed classes, so precisely what a 763 would have been offering. The 762 was significantly smaller.


767 production peaked in 1990-1993. It was higher than the combined A310 and A300s. Both airplanes were using similar generation engines like GE CF6-80Cs and PW4000s. A330 deliveries didn't start until 1993 and was slow to gain market share. A330 production didn't eclipse 767 production until 2002.

You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:31 pm

Balerit wrote:
ap305 wrote:
The a300 had one of the highest dispatch reliability and ease of maintanence of any aircraft at that time .... I suggest searching flightglobal's archive.


I agree, ours flew 24/7 non stop and I found them extremely reliable. They were also miles ahead of Boeing and I suppose those who complained were like those old timers going from piston aircraft to jets, they moaned like hell :)


Can you elaborate? What airline was operating A300s 24/7 nonstop? Given the airplanes shorter range, I would be surprised to see many airlines having higher utilization on an A300 than 767.

Also what Boeing airplane are you comparing A300 reliability to when you say miles ahead? If you are comparing to 707s or 747s then absolutely. Compared to 727s, 737s, 757s or 767s, I would like to know more.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:45 pm

Wouldn't one want to compare the A310 to the 767-200 and 200ER rather than the whole 767 range? Looking at it in that way it seems total deliveries were similar.

I think Airbus could've had similar success as the 767 given proper investment in that product range addressing that market segment, just that they decided to leapfrog the capability by doing the whole A330/A340 thing.

Perhaps in hind sight one could argue that it would've been better for Airbus to have skipped the whole A340 thing and just focus on further developing their A300/A310 and A330 portfolio. Developing the A330 further to more successfully compete with the 777. That would've produce more extra A330 sales than the A340 ever created and allowed for a much bigger share of the 767 market with their developed A300/A310 range. But in hind sight everything is easy.
Last edited by Taxi645 on Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:58 pm

I have no doubt the A310 was better optimized for Euro-travel in the 80s, if we're talking about FRA-CDG or LHR, for example. The airframe was capable of Europe-Africa, where Sabena used them frequently. By the time ETOPS rolled around, the 767 really got the nod because of its wing being more efficient on flights of more than 3 hours (I forget the exact duration but recall something like that). While the A310 wing had nice supercritical aerodynamics, it was stubbier and the increased aspect ratio of the 767 was better suited to the North Atlantic. The 767 was stretchable and the -300 became very popular. It's not clear that the A310 could have been effectively stretched or tarted up to occupy the same market space as a 767-300ER. though the A300-600 found some use in the North Atlantic.

Delta inherited multiple Pan Am A310s in late 1991, but by then they were also building a fleet of 767-332ERs, which they had committed to around 1990, a year or two before the Pan Am situation was even a hazy thought. Delta flew the inherited Pan Am birds for awhile, but I'm told the -200s (non winglet) were extremely marginal westbound on TATL, and were likely doomed in favor of the 767 or more A310-300s. Airbus reportedly gave DL an offer they couldn't refuse on some new-build A310s to supplement the Pan Am ships in the early 90s. It was very low cost capacity at a time they wanted to clean up the Pan Am situation, especially at JFK. A downturn hit the economy and DL in particular circa 1993, at which point the easily-returnable A310s from AB were let go and the 767-332ER settled on. I'd love to hear about DL experience with the A310-300s during that time. One aspect in favor of the A310 was a wider cabin, allowing for a more commodious 6-across, so a nicer Business Class than the 767, this being before BizElite.
 
parapente
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:15 pm

One thing I do admire from those early days was the fuse.A brilliant design,then and now 50+ years later with quite a few more to come.As above perfect for business and perfect for the trailblazing 18" y seat.
And yes I have also flown once on package cattle class X9.Hardly great, but for a 5 hour flight (am quite slim) bearable.The economics in this config must be amazing.
As above again.Such a shame that they trailblazed the idea of a widebodied twin but then got lost for a while with the A340 but I guess that was an etops timing thing.
 
WIederling
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:36 pm

767 really got the nod because of its wing being more efficient on flights of more than 3 hours (I forget the exact duration but recall something like that).

Do we have more than folklore on this?
The 767-200 swapped capacity for range versus the A310.
Murphy is an optimist
 
airbazar
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:41 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.

The reason for the sales difference is simple. The European market in those days (and even the Asian markets), was significantly smaller than the North American market so it stands to reason that an aircraft almost exclusively designed for the European market would sell a lot less. Its when you put it into the context of what its target customer base was, that it becomes clear how successful it was.
 
Newbiepilot
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:56 pm

airbazar wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.

The reason for the sales difference is simple. The European market in those days (and even the Asian markets), was significantly smaller than the North American market so it stands to reason that an aircraft almost exclusively designed for the European market would sell a lot less. Its when you put it into the context of what its target customer base was, that it becomes clear how successful it was.


If we talk about about the A310, I don't understand how it was only designed for the European market? Transatlantic flying is the same for North American and European operators. Delta bought new A310s, and then quickly replaced them with 767-300ERs. Kind of like AA and DL buying MD11s and quickly replacing them with 777-200ERs. Air Transat still has A310s as well as Canada 3000 and Wardair in Canada had them. Eastern, Pan Am, American, Continental and Delta all operated the A300s or A310s at a period of time, so it wasn't only sold in Europe.
Last edited by Newbiepilot on Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
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Balerit
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:56 pm

airbazar wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.

The reason for the sales difference is simple. The European market in those days (and even the Asian markets), was significantly smaller than the North American market so it stands to reason that an aircraft almost exclusively designed for the European market would sell a lot less. Its when you put it into the context of what its target customer base was, that it becomes clear how successful it was.


You are absolutely right, it took a long time for Airbus to be accepted by US airlines. It was Barry Goldwater who flew the test A300 and said “Well,….we’ve had our ass kicked, ..if I can say that.”
Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (retired).
 
VS11
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:01 pm

Here are some more A300 threads from the archives. They focus more on American Airlines A300s but I am sure will be informative. The post below is by fxramper from this thread: viewtopic.php?t=467349

"A Whole Different American Airlines A300 (by 1337Delta764 Jul 31 2007 in Civil Aviation)
Question About AAs A300 (by PA101 Apr 21 2007 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300 Divert To MIA Due To Rudder Problems. (by JAM747 Apr 2 2007 in Civil Aviation)
Why No AA A300 On DFW? (by Edelag Feb 22 2007 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300 Questions (by AAden Nov 9 2006 in Civil Aviation)
Is The A300 Fleet Of SV Or AA Older? (by ConcordeLoss Oct 6 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA Parks Seven A300s, Extends Leases (by QQflyboy Sep 16 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300 Crash On National Geographic Tonight. (by JAM747 Sep 7 2006 in Civil Aviation)
What Else Did AA Consider During A300 Order? (by JAM747 Aug 19 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300 Routes (by AAden Aug 5 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300-600 (by ATLAaron May 31 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300's On Transatlantic Routes (by WorldTraveler Apr 30 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA's Airbus A300-600's (by AirbusA346 Apr 25 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300 Incident @ JFK (by LONGisland89 Mar 30 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300's- Questions (by Cadet57 Feb 18 2006 in Civil Aviation)
AA A300s To HNL (by 1337Delta764 Nov 20 2005 in Civil Aviation)
AA A306's & 767's (by VS773ER Oct 5 2005 in Civil Aviation)
AA And The A300 (by MFEFlyer Oct 1 2005 in Civil Aviation)

There is enough information here for a three volume piece on AA A300.When the MX guys at AA can't find an answer they are looking for during D checks, they use Anet as their resource.

rotfl "
 
Newbiepilot
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:08 pm

Balerit wrote:
airbazar wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.

The reason for the sales difference is simple. The European market in those days (and even the Asian markets), was significantly smaller than the North American market so it stands to reason that an aircraft almost exclusively designed for the European market would sell a lot less. Its when you put it into the context of what its target customer base was, that it becomes clear how successful it was.


You are absolutely right, it took a long time for Airbus to be accepted by US airlines. It was Barry Goldwater who flew the test A300 and said “Well,….we’ve had our ass kicked, ..if I can say that.”


Pan Am, Eastern, Continental, Delta, American, Canadian Airlines, Wardair, Canada 3000, Air Transat, Aerocancun, and Taesa were all North American operators of the A310 or A300. On top of that there are half a dozen freight operators. The A300 started off slow around the world, but quite a few airlines in North America did end up operating the airplane.
 
oldannyboy
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:22 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
oldannyboy wrote:
Then of course Boeing went on to 'optimise' the 767 programme, while Airbus decided to concentrate on their new family of long-rangers, the A330/A340, and the A310 was quietly dropped. The market decided that it needed not only more range, but specifically more capacity, hence why the A310 sort of died a quiet death.
So, to answer the original question of the OP: I would not compare the 767-300ER that could fly MAN-LAX, to an A300-600R -which was essentially a more advanced A300B4- which indeed could only fly the 'shorter' Atlantic routes, being in practice a warmed-up medium hauler from a previous generation... I would look more into the A310...now, that was a great north-Atlantic performer, and a very common one too in those days! Please also do note that size-wise the A310 almost perfectly matched the capacity of the 763, with an average (1990s or late '80s configurations - 8Y; 7 C/J ; 6F) of 220 seats in long-haul mixed classes, so precisely what a 763 would have been offering. The 762 was significantly smaller.


767 production peaked in 1990-1993. It was higher than the combined A310 and A300s. Both airplanes were using similar generation engines like GE CF6-80Cs and PW4000s. A330 deliveries didn't start until 1993 and was slow to gain market share. A330 production didn't eclipse 767 production until 2002.

You did a good job highlighting the strengths of the A310. There must be some reasons why the 767 was more popular than the A310. What do you think they are? I don't think it was that Airbus focused on the A330 since the A300/A310 matched 767 engine performance and engine upgrades were the bulk of the changes that enabled higher MTOWs on the 767s throughout the 1980s.


Yes, absolutely. You are 100% right. I was simply trying to elaborate on the obvious 'bias of the day' with some "hindsight perspective" gracefully allowed by my age (!!) :-) I am simply trying to highlight to some of the younger audience how significant and advanced the A310 was in its day. I mean NOW it's clear that the 767 was a far more successful airliner, but I wanted to point out how back then the A310 seemed equally excellent, if not better. It was an agreed given in the industry that Airbus technology in the 1980s was the more advanced one pushing the envelope, and that Boeing were being somewhat conservative with the 767.
So, while I agree that the production of the 767 far outnumbers that of the A310, in Europe and perhaps to a lesser extent in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, the A310 was for a time significantly more common and more successful. At that time the 767 was a bestseller mostly for US airlines, where the A310 had only instead served for PA. The great worldwide(international) success of the 767 is mostly owed to a somewhat later wave of orders for the -300ER variant, particularly for European customers. In some instances the 'bettered' 767s have even replaced the A310 (see KLM for instance).
I think that the 767 was designed in a more 'clever' way, or in other words, it could be improved over time and welcome some of the technological advancements created for the 777. The A310 was instead build as a standalone model that could/would not warrant subsequent evolutions. Also, not sure how the wing could be changed to allow for greater MTOW. As it's been pointed above, by the time Boeing was improving the 767, Airbus was focussing on the A330/A340 (it's a fact - and resourced only amount to X), and also had their hands full on both the A320 family and the FWB concept, which by the way could not be accommodated in an A310 without incurring in huge costs. I think it was also a matter of different priorities: Airbus felt the future was in the new long range combo. Boeing had the exact same 'combo concept' with a fully matured 767 alongside the brand new 777.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 2:30 pm

Newbiepilot wrote:
Balerit wrote:
ap305 wrote:
The a300 had one of the highest dispatch reliability and ease of maintanence of any aircraft at that time .... I suggest searching flightglobal's archive.


I agree, ours flew 24/7 non stop and I found them extremely reliable. They were also miles ahead of Boeing and I suppose those who complained were like those old timers going from piston aircraft to jets, they moaned like hell :)


Can you elaborate? What airline was operating A300s 24/7 nonstop? Given the airplanes shorter range, I would be surprised to see many airlines having higher utilization on an A300 than 767.
quote]

I think he was referring to SAA, who really pushed the limit of their fleet of Airbus A300s. They were literally always in the air, flying short domestic hops, as well as short to medium hauls throughout Africa. They had stellar performance and dispatch reliability, they operated out of hot&Hi Jo'Burg with no issues, in and out of small strips, and inaugurated widebody service to so many African destinations.
To note that SAA operated their A300 with a 9-abreast Y section.

The same (operationally) can be said about many customers, who found the A300 equally adaptable from very short domestic hops, to medium hauls, to long(er) range flights, sometimes with en-route stops (very common in those days even with aircrafts that did not need to refuel, so not an issue). Some of these airlines were for instance Olympic, Alitalia, Tunis Air...A300s were literally always up in the air, flying a mix of short hops, international longer trips, plus the odd-long haul, often back-to-back.
 
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Balerit
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:25 pm

oldannyboy wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
Balerit wrote:

I agree, ours flew 24/7 non stop and I found them extremely reliable. They were also miles ahead of Boeing and I suppose those who complained were like those old timers going from piston aircraft to jets, they moaned like hell :)


Can you elaborate? What airline was operating A300s 24/7 nonstop? Given the airplanes shorter range, I would be surprised to see many airlines having higher utilization on an A300 than 767.
quote]

I think he was referring to SAA, who really pushed the limit of their fleet of Airbus A300s. They were literally always in the air, flying short domestic hops, as well as short to medium hauls throughout Africa. They had stellar performance and dispatch reliability, they operated out of hot&Hi Jo'Burg with no issues, in and out of small strips, and inaugurated widebody service to so many African destinations.
To note that SAA operated their A300 with a 9-abreast Y section.

The same (operationally) can be said about many customers, who found the A300 equally adaptable from very short domestic hops, to medium hauls, to long(er) range flights, sometimes with en-route stops (very common in those days even with aircrafts that did not need to refuel, so not an issue). Some of these airlines were for instance Olympic, Alitalia, Tunis Air...A300s were literally always up in the air, flying a mix of short hops, international longer trips, plus the odd-long haul, often back-to-back.


Yes I was referring to SAA. These aircraft flew a lot, especially JNB-CPT and JNB-DUR carrying the early morning and late evening businessmen, and if I remember correctly, had 276 seats, about the same as our B747SP's.
Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (retired).
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:08 pm

EA flew the A300 fleet 24/7 driving the Airbus tech reps crazy. We had a freight deal with Consolidated Freightways that kept them busy at night, then flew the day schedule. “Moonlight Express” was the pax side of the deal. CF basically paid for the plane and pax were almost pure profit. Planes were beat.

GF
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:11 pm

In hindsight Airbus should have kept the A310 family going. Sales were slow 20 years ago but a new engine would have kept it going. Sales would have picked up when gate congestion started to hit in the early 2000's. Today it would be selling extremely well.

The Trent 500's that came out on the A340-500 in 2000 would have been absolutely perfect. Higher bypass ratio and 10% improvement in SFC would have allowed for increased range or a slight stretch. A slight stretch would have then taken the A300's place combining two models into one.

They just didn't see the long term potential. I guess you could say the same thing with the 757, but Boeing didn't have a new engine available in that thrust class.

The A310 is basically a shrink of the A300. Yes the A310 has a smaller wing in area but it has the same amount of lift. Both have similar max takeoff weights with the A310 being a more advanced wing design. They both have the same fuel volume inside the wing too.

They could have made the A310-300 and A310-400. With the 400 being a slight stretch to the length of the A300.

This model today even with the trent 500's would be outselling A330 2 to 1. Infact the A330 probably would never have got a new engine once the A350 came along. The A310-400 would be doing the shorter flights and would compliment the A350 perfectly.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:33 pm

RJMAZ wrote:
In hindsight Airbus should have kept the A310 family going. Sales were slow 20 years ago but a new engine would have kept it going. Sales would have picked up when gate congestion started to hit in the early 2000's. Today it would be selling extremely well.

The problem with the A310 still would have remained the 767. If a reengined A310 was successful then Boeing would have just reengined the 767 with the same engines and Airbus would have been back to square one with the A310/A300's primary issue: for just a few tons (~1-3 t) more in OEW you can get a dramatically more capable (~15 t higher MTOW, ~30,000 L higher fuel capacity) aircraft.

Keep in mind too that the A300/A310 is also very different from the A320 and beyond. It is a much "dumber" aircraft lacking sidesticks and with limited fly-by-wire tech. Altering it to match the rest of Airbus's lineup would have cost a pretty penny while the 767Max would have built in full commonality with the ~1,000 767s already sold.
 
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FlyCaledonian
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:36 pm

Some interesting thoughts and I've enjoyed reading through them. The early phase-out of the A310 (especially the A310-300) makes me wonder what drove that given it seems to have had similar capacity to the 767-300. Was it L1011 syndrome, in that it was effectively an orphan aircraft after Airbus moved on to the A330/A340?

DL phasing the A310s out in favour of more 767-332ERs (but why both PW and GE engines?) reminded me that KL did similar - replacing its A310-200s with 767-306ERs (which in turn were replaced by A330-200s).
Let's Go British Caledonian!
 
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Polot
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:58 pm

FlyCaledonian wrote:
Some interesting thoughts and I've enjoyed reading through them. The early phase-out of the A310 (especially the A310-300) makes me wonder what drove that given it seems to have had similar capacity to the 767-300. Was it L1011 syndrome, in that it was effectively an orphan aircraft after Airbus moved on to the A330/A340?

When equipped with 8Y the A310 has similar capacity to the 767-200. For example DL's A310s had 196 seats (12F/30J/154Y) versus 218 seats in their contemporary 763s (10F/34J/174Y). KL's A310s had 189-206 seats versus ~220 in their 763s. AF had 177 seats in the A310s versus 208-215 seats in their 763s.
 
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:18 pm

RJMAZ wrote:
In hindsight Airbus should have kept the A310 family going. Sales were slow 20 years ago but a new engine would have kept it going. Sales would have picked up when gate congestion started to hit in the early 2000's. Today it would be selling extremely well.

The Trent 500's that came out on the A340-500 in 2000 would have been absolutely perfect. Higher bypass ratio and 10% improvement in SFC would have allowed for increased range or a slight stretch. A slight stretch would have then taken the A300's place combining two models into one.

They just didn't see the long term potential. I guess you could say the same thing with the 757, but Boeing didn't have a new engine available in that thrust class.

The A310 is basically a shrink of the A300. Yes the A310 has a smaller wing in area but it has the same amount of lift. Both have similar max takeoff weights with the A310 being a more advanced wing design. They both have the same fuel volume inside the wing too.

They could have made the A310-300 and A310-400. With the 400 being a slight stretch to the length of the A300.

This model today even with the trent 500's would be outselling A330 2 to 1. Infact the A330 probably would never have got a new engine once the A350 came along. The A310-400 would be doing the shorter flights and would compliment the A350 perfectly.


The A310 and 767 had more or less the same engines with the CF6 and PW4000s. The 767 sales outnumbered the A310 by a significant margin. How could Airbus have kept milking it all the way to the year 2000? A310 production never exceeded 30 airplanes per year. There was no new engine available and 1993 when sales for the A310 essentially ended. The A310 wing is 25% smaller than the 767, so there was only so far it could go on engine thrust alone.
 
WA707atMSP
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Re: A300/A310 v 767

Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:47 pm

Some of the posters here have missed out on an important point:

The big difference between the 767 and A310 wings wasn't just their size. It was the types of flights they are optimized for.

An aircraft designed for FRA-CDG and ZRH-LHR spends much more time climbing and descending than an aircraft designed for ATL-SEA or JFK-SFO does. The short haul aircraft can sacrifice some efficiency in fuel efficiency at higher altitudes in exchange for being more efficient during climb and descent.

As mentioned earlier, the A310 was designed for Lufthansa's and Swissair's need for an aircraft on intra-European routes that was smaller than the A300, but larger than the 727-200 and DC-9-50 / 80, so its wing was optimized to be most efficient during climb and descent, not at cruise.

The 767 was originally intended to be used to replace DC-8-50s on United's routes from Cleveland and Detroit to the US West Coast, or Denver to the US East Coast. American, however, wanted an aircraft that could be used on routes like SFO-JFK or LAX - BOS / IAD that could not support AA's DC-10s, so the 767's design was optimized for US Transcontinental routes.

TWA analyzed both the A310 and 767 in depth, and determined that on routes shorter than 750 miles, the A310 was the more efficient aircraft, but on routes longer than that, the 767 was better.

Once ETOPS twin jet flights were allowed, because the 767 was more efficient on flights of that length than the A310, most airlines that needed an ETOPS twin (including A310 launch customer KLM) chose the 767.

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