DEL LAX IMO will be good only with a 789 or at the max a 77L. It wouldn't have worked with 77W .
They don't have 789s unfortunately. The board unwisely refused to convert the last 6 788s to 789s.
Is it too soon to start asking about AI 777 replacements? Keeping in mind that the oldest frames are over 10 years old, and any comparable replacements would have at least 8-10 year backlogs?
My vote is for a subfleet of A35Ks (now that Airbus has extended the range).
Even I wonder what AI would replace these 777s by. But before that, they desperately need more narrow bodies to remain relevant in India unless their strategy is to only offer domestic connections from DEL/BOM.
A350 family makes sense from a range/capacity standpoint. They can use A35Ks on established routes like SFO, EWR, JFK, ORD and use A359s to LAX, IAH, IAD, JFK and ORD (from BOM), maybe BOS/SEA? Also A359s might offer better economics on SYD/MEL over 788s
I do not understand why AI cannot increase utilization on their 777s by starting a noon departure to US. I had posted this earlier as well.
AI103 0115 DEL - IAD 0715 77W D
AI104 1030 IAD - DEL 1000+1 77W D
AI107 1315 DEL - EWR 1900 77W D
AI108 2200 EWR - DEL 2140+1 77W D
A similar schedule can be worked out for starting BOM-ORD as well
This rotation would need 3 frames and would align perfectly with AIs European bank. If the US nonstops are making money, does it make sense for AI to lease few 77Ws to expand more, I am sure they can get few ex EK birds for a good price.