Page 1 of 1

Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:57 am
by eamondzhang
***This is a rumour only***

Heard from multiple sources (normally reliable) that Air China is nearing an additional 15-20 A350 orders to be announced during Xi Jinping's visit to France within the next few days. No specific model (-900 or -1000) confirmed at this stage.

I found that interesting not only due to the timing with all the Boeing sagas (and mind you CA is a relatively big MAX user), but also if my memory serves CA would be the second carrier after SQ to order additional A350s when they have both 787 and A350 in fleet? Although granted SQ only has 78Xs at this stage and it's 788/789s are flying with TZ.

Cheers,
Michael

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:59 am
by Polot
Nothing interesting about the timing. With a state visit to France order announcements are to be expected.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:08 am
by eamondzhang
Polot wrote:
Nothing interesting about the timing. With a state visit to France order announcements are to be expected.

One thing though is that not every state visits result in orders, and not all orders are announced during state visits (granted for China probably 95% of them are), especially since Trump is still very much in the trade war mode and wanted China to buy far more.

Michael

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:21 am
by Polot
eamondzhang wrote:
Polot wrote:
Nothing interesting about the timing. With a state visit to France order announcements are to be expected.

One thing though is that not every state visits result in orders, and not all orders are announced during state visits (granted for China probably 95% of them are), especially since Trump is still very much in the trade war mode and wanted China to buy far more.

Michael

It’s very common with China, granted the “orders” announced may not be firmed, or are previously firmed or previously announced as a MOU, or sometimes even previously announced at a prior state visit.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:28 am
by workhorse
Hopefully 350-1000s to replace the 77Ws.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:39 am
by MrHMSH
If the rumour is true then it's a decent but somewhat expected boost for the A350, we already see quite a few incremental orders for widebodies from the big Chinese 3, so seeing more is hardly a surprise. Even allowing for EY's cancellations it's looking more productive for the A350 than in previous years.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:02 pm
by Bricktop
workhorse wrote:
Hopefully 350-1000s to replace the 77Ws.

CA's B77W fleet average age is 5 years, so your hope is likely to be in vain.

I thought China ordered centrally and distributed the frames around the airlines. It would not be surprising to see them buy more Airbus A350's, but I think a fat A338/9 order would be better news Let's hope it goes better than when Macron went to China and a.net was sure he'd come back with a fistful of A380 orders.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:38 pm
by workhorse
Bricktop wrote:
workhorse wrote:
Hopefully 350-1000s to replace the 77Ws.

CA's B77W fleet average age is 5 years, so your hope is likely to be in vain.


They could be relegated to domestic routes where there is a need to increase capacity without clogging the airspace and replaced by 350-1000s on long haul.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 4:04 pm
by chonetsao
workhorse wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
workhorse wrote:
Hopefully 350-1000s to replace the 77Ws.

CA's B77W fleet average age is 5 years, so your hope is likely to be in vain.


They could be relegated to domestic routes where there is a need to increase capacity without clogging the airspace and replaced by 350-1000s on long haul.


Not a chance.

Air China has unlimited state resource but they are not stupid. B77W is their work horse for long haul high capacity route, no way to replace them with A35K.

Air China frequently use B748 on route it needed capacity. And they have priority from clogged air space from PEK. So it is not their concern. Plus all VIP travelling domestic is most likely to be on Air China, thus even higher priority when air space is clogged.

If there is any orders it will be A359. The original order was 10 which is too small a fleet. Air China is likely to order A359 to replace leased A330 and older A332. Air China is planning to release more A332 to its subsidiaries in Chengdu and Hangzhou for secondary city expansion. So the new A359 would be handy to be used by Beijing base for long haul aircraft replacement.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:09 pm
by workhorse
chonetsao wrote:
workhorse wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
CA's B77W fleet average age is 5 years, so your hope is likely to be in vain.


They could be relegated to domestic routes where there is a need to increase capacity without clogging the airspace and replaced by 350-1000s on long haul.


Not a chance.

Air China has unlimited state resource but they are not stupid. B77W is their work horse for long haul high capacity route, no way to replace them with A35K.

Air China frequently use B748 on route it needed capacity. And they have priority from clogged air space from PEK. So it is not their concern. Plus all VIP travelling domestic is most likely to be on Air China, thus even higher priority when air space is clogged.

If there is any orders it will be A359. The original order was 10 which is too small a fleet. Air China is likely to order A359 to replace leased A330 and older A332. Air China is planning to release more A332 to its subsidiaries in Chengdu and Hangzhou for secondary city expansion. So the new A359 would be handy to be used by Beijing base for long haul aircraft replacement.


The A35K has roughly the same capacity as the 77W in CA's configuration while it burns much less fuel. Also, while it will not be more comfortable seating-wise (Air China is one of the last airline that still has 3-3-3 in most of their 777s), it priduces much less noise.

The 77W, on the other hand, is the biggest passenger airplane currently on sale. It would make a whole lot of sense on domestic routes where there's plenty of growth. It could replace some of the older domestic 330s.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:17 pm
by chonetsao
workhorse wrote:
chonetsao wrote:
workhorse wrote:

They could be relegated to domestic routes where there is a need to increase capacity without clogging the airspace and replaced by 350-1000s on long haul.


Not a chance.

Air China has unlimited state resource but they are not stupid. B77W is their work horse for long haul high capacity route, no way to replace them with A35K.

Air China frequently use B748 on route it needed capacity. And they have priority from clogged air space from PEK. So it is not their concern. Plus all VIP travelling domestic is most likely to be on Air China, thus even higher priority when air space is clogged.

If there is any orders it will be A359. The original order was 10 which is too small a fleet. Air China is likely to order A359 to replace leased A330 and older A332. Air China is planning to release more A332 to its subsidiaries in Chengdu and Hangzhou for secondary city expansion. So the new A359 would be handy to be used by Beijing base for long haul aircraft replacement.


The A35K has roughly the same capacity as the 77W in CA's configuration while it burns much less fuel. Also, while it will not be more comfortable seating-wise (Air China is one of the last airline that still has 3-3-3 in most of their 777s), it priduces much less noise.

The 77W, on the other hand, is the biggest passenger airplane currently on sale. It would make a whole lot of sense on domestic routes where there's plenty of growth. It could replace some of the older domestic 330s.


It does not matter what A35K is for or what B77W is for. It also does not matter what the potential A35K or B77W has. It only matters what Air China intends to do with its B77W. Air China bought B77W for its long haul high capacity route. It did not buy B77W for domestic runs. Yes Air China is using B77W for domestic routes between Intercontinental missions. But Air China use B77W as the predominant long haul high capacity route flagship planes.

Air China is likely to keep the 3-3-3 layout with its B77W. So it will not use it as domestic work horse. Air China would convert to 3-4-3 for domestic usage.

And Air China is not going to buy A35K, China is facing a economic downturn pending trade deals. Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers. Air China is happy with its A359 and it intends to use new A359 to replace A330s.

It really does not matter how good A35K is. It matters how Air China intends to use its planes and what capacity it wants.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:21 pm
by YangFeng
chonetsao wrote:
Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers.


Really? All I see is a hunt for any route they can get, except maybe for Air China. I agree that the 359 is the likely choice here though.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:04 pm
by moyangmm
chonetsao wrote:

Air China is likely to keep the 3-3-3 layout with its B77W. So it will not use it as domestic work horse. Air China would convert to 3-4-3 for domestic usage.

And Air China is not going to buy A35K, China is facing a economic downturn pending trade deals. Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers. Air China is happy with its A359 and it intends to use new A359 to replace A330s.



CA already has a fleet of high density 77W (36J356Y) that is 3-4-3.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:23 pm
by chonetsao
YangFeng wrote:
chonetsao wrote:
Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers.


Really? All I see is a hunt for any route they can get, except maybe for Air China. I agree that the 359 is the likely choice here though.


Yes what you saw is true. Every airlines are trying to apply new route authority for two reasons, market position and or local subsidies. The situation is very delicate. The capacity provided by Chinese Airlines are unbalanced and there are issues with system wide capacity needs to be addressed. Thus the hunt for new routes and subsidies to absorb the planes airlines had ordered. On other hand, the big CN3 are trying to be disciplined as possible to avoid excess capacity increase. The reality is they all know the situation is not right. But they can only put this capacity control as a high operational priority yet has to follow competitors. To conclude, Capacity Discipline is a high priority for all Chinese airlines, the reality suggests otherwise. This is due to the unique development stage of Chinese aviation market. At least in domestic routes, the capacity control is done through routes distribution system from CAAC.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:24 pm
by chonetsao
moyangmm wrote:
chonetsao wrote:

Air China is likely to keep the 3-3-3 layout with its B77W. So it will not use it as domestic work horse. Air China would convert to 3-4-3 for domestic usage.

And Air China is not going to buy A35K, China is facing a economic downturn pending trade deals. Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers. Air China is happy with its A359 and it intends to use new A359 to replace A330s.



CA already has a fleet of high density 77W (36J356Y) that is 3-4-3.


You are very right about this. And this sub fleet is seen on many domestic runs.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:49 am
by moyangmm
YangFeng wrote:
chonetsao wrote:
Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers.


Really? All I see is a hunt for any route they can get, except maybe for Air China. I agree that the 359 is the likely choice here though.


There is no capacity for growth at PEK until maybe 2022 because of PKX.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:56 am
by ericm2031
eamondzhang wrote:
I found that interesting not only due to the timing with all the Boeing sagas


Not sure what "all the Boeing sagas" are, but the MAX would have nothing to do with a widebody order...

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:55 am
by eamondzhang
ericm2031 wrote:
eamondzhang wrote:
I found that interesting not only due to the timing with all the Boeing sagas


Not sure what "all the Boeing sagas" are, but the MAX would have nothing to do with a widebody order...

Don't forget 787 which CA is also a victim of some sort - CA use RR although one can argue this has nothing to do with Boeing.

Michael

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:39 am
by hkcanadaexpat
ericm2031 wrote:
Not sure what "all the Boeing sagas" are, but the MAX would have nothing to do with a widebody order...

I would think you are unlikely to see a Chinese Boeing widebody order until the trade dispute is resolved. China is likely keeping those orders tight to their chest as a negotiation's tactic.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:10 pm
by EChid
hkcanadaexpat wrote:
ericm2031 wrote:
Not sure what "all the Boeing sagas" are, but the MAX would have nothing to do with a widebody order...

I would think you are unlikely to see a Chinese Boeing widebody order until the trade dispute is resolved. China is likely keeping those orders tight to their chest as a negotiation's tactic.

I agree. And yes, I can see CA ordering more 359s, not 35Js. I'm sure there are some cost savings for them there too because the 359 is already certified with their newer, more competitive J-class product and features no F, making it both more competitive for North American, Oceanic, and European routes but also more flexible.

I've found it interesting that we've seen some Chinese carriers finally pulling back on routes, capacity, and expansion. CA cancelled PVG/MEL service a few months ago citing competition (MU also flies the route). My sense is that CA is ceding a lot of PVG traffic to MU these days, especially given MU's more competitive hard product.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:19 pm
by tphuang
CA's 77W has such a lackluster J product. They really need to up their game with either a cabin refresh or putting some A350s on these flagship routes. They've got to have the worst hard product out of the CN3. They will keep getting bottom of the barrel fares on J cabin if they don't do something.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:31 pm
by EChid
tphuang wrote:
CA's 77W has such a lackluster J product. They really need to up their game with either a cabin refresh or putting some A350s on these flagship routes. They've got to have the worst hard product out of the CN3. They will keep getting bottom of the barrel fares on J cabin if they don't do something.

Yes. The second-best J product they fly are the old 332s, which is ridiculous. I think that's why they've put their 359s on more competitive routes (like FRA to PVG, etc.)

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:47 pm
by YangFeng
EChid wrote:
I've found it interesting that we've seen some Chinese carriers finally pulling back on routes, capacity, and expansion. CA cancelled PVG/MEL service a few months ago citing competition (MU also flies the route). My sense is that CA is ceding a lot of PVG traffic to MU these days, especially given MU's more competitive hard product.


PVG to Australia, yes. But they use their A350 primarily in PVG in order to better compete with MU and others to Europe. I think a decision was made to keep their strong presence in Europe and North America, and cede some traffic to other regions.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:00 pm
by mdavies06
The purchase of Airbus and Boeing jets by China are all to do with politics and need to rebalance the trade deficits. There is nothing right now to stop China ordering from both Airbus and Boeing, on both WB and NB. The trade dispute is unlikely to be resolved for months if not years, either. Besides, China has trade disputes with the EU too just not in the same scale to the US.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:46 pm
by NZ321
chonetsao wrote:
workhorse wrote:
chonetsao wrote:

Not a chance.

Air China has unlimited state resource but they are not stupid. B77W is their work horse for long haul high capacity route, no way to replace them with A35K.

Air China frequently use B748 on route it needed capacity. And they have priority from clogged air space from PEK. So it is not their concern. Plus all VIP travelling domestic is most likely to be on Air China, thus even higher priority when air space is clogged.

If there is any orders it will be A359. The original order was 10 which is too small a fleet. Air China is likely to order A359 to replace leased A330 and older A332. Air China is planning to release more A332 to its subsidiaries in Chengdu and Hangzhou for secondary city expansion. So the new A359 would be handy to be used by Beijing base for long haul aircraft replacement.


The A35K has roughly the same capacity as the 77W in CA's configuration while it burns much less fuel. Also, while it will not be more comfortable seating-wise (Air China is one of the last airline that still has 3-3-3 in most of their 777s), it priduces much less noise.

The 77W, on the other hand, is the biggest passenger airplane currently on sale. It would make a whole lot of sense on domestic routes where there's plenty of growth. It could replace some of the older domestic 330s.


It does not matter what A35K is for or what B77W is for. It also does not matter what the potential A35K or B77W has. It only matters what Air China intends to do with its B77W. Air China bought B77W for its long haul high capacity route. It did not buy B77W for domestic runs. Yes Air China is using B77W for domestic routes between Intercontinental missions. But Air China use B77W as the predominant long haul high capacity route flagship planes.

Air China is likely to keep the 3-3-3 layout with its B77W. So it will not use it as domestic work horse. Air China would convert to 3-4-3 for domestic usage.

And Air China is not going to buy A35K, China is facing a economic downturn pending trade deals. Capacity discipline is high priority with Chinese carriers. Air China is happy with its A359 and it intends to use new A359 to replace A330s.

It really does not matter how good A35K is. It matters how Air China intends to use its planes and what capacity it wants.


Thanks for your insightful clarification :)

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:57 pm
by LaunchDetected
mdavies06 wrote:
The purchase of Airbus and Boeing jets by China are all to do with politics and need to rebalance the trade deficits. There is nothing right now to stop China ordering from both Airbus and Boeing, on both WB and NB. The trade dispute is unlikely to be resolved for months if not years, either. Besides, China has trade disputes with the EU too just not in the same scale to the US.


Or maybe because it fits perfectly their needs.

Re: Rumour: Air China nears 15-20 additional A350s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:04 pm
by musman9853
hkcanadaexpat wrote:
ericm2031 wrote:
Not sure what "all the Boeing sagas" are, but the MAX would have nothing to do with a widebody order...

I would think you are unlikely to see a Chinese Boeing widebody order until the trade dispute is resolved. China is likely keeping those orders tight to their chest as a negotiation's tactic.



there were rumors that a significant boeing order was coming as part of a new trade deal. but probably not before then