Page 1 of 3

Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 8:32 am
by Rifitto
According to the article ,Airbus aims to offer a combo of the a330neo and a321neo to respond to a hypothetical B797 (NMA)
to cover the segment between single aisle and widebodies ,(the middle of market)

sales chief Christian Scherer discrib it as “left-hook, right-hook approach”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-airbus-outlook/airbus-prepares-counter-punch-to-new-boeing-mid-sized-jet-idUSKCN1SR0OU

Given the big difference in capacity and weight between the two, how could the A21N and the A338 fill that gap ?
unless AB decides to aplly a deep modification for both : shrink the 338 ,decrease the weight and the engines thrust ,
stretch the A321 and increase the MTOW .IMO this going to be as expencive as a clean sheet project ,
to ends up with tweeked old generation aircrafts vs next generation one ,
we all know what happend last time AB went this way ;the 330neo vs the dreamliner
Airbus has no ongoing project ,why not simply going clean sheet too ?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 8:57 am
by flee
If Boeing is having a hard time justifying the business case for NMA, Airbus will find it even harder to do so. As it is Airbus already has a competitive product at the lower end of the market and only needs to listen to their customers' requirements to optimise the A321Neo further to suit their needs.

I am not sure about the upper end of the NMA market, though. The A338Neo is probably less optimised than the A321Neo and needs major modifications to meet the needs of the NMA markets. Airbus will not need to spend as much on these modifications - both the A321 and the A330 feature mature technology and the technical risks are lower.

Boeing's NMA is not going to feature new technology either - it will borrow from the 777X, 787 and Max. That is how Boeing plans to keep costs down to make it a better business proposition.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 9:08 am
by Waterbomber2
This new sales chief is booking more cancellations than orders.
We'll see but I'm very skeptical.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 9:27 am
by f4f3a
With the 797 possibly being pushed back might be enough . It’s a shame airbus didn’t have enough resources to redo the a330 as clean sheet composite aircraft to counter 787. Maybe with the demise of the a380 we can see resources pushed in this direction . Ideally a range with 320 321 322 and then 338 339 with the 220 taking the lower end

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 9:55 am
by DL757NYC
Boeing offered a rewinged 757 with new engines to airlines and they all came back with they wanted something 20 percent larger than the 757. The A330 and 321 would not be able to compete with that offering. If Boeing delivers a product the airlines are asking for Airbus wouldn’t be able to compete. The A330 is too large and the 321 is too small.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 9:57 am
by scbriml
Waterbomber2 wrote:
This new sales chief is booking more cancellations than orders.
We'll see but I'm very skeptical.


How is that different to Boeing so far this year? :confused:

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 10:14 am
by astuteman
Rifitto wrote:
According to the article ,Airbus aims to offer a combo of the a330neo and a321neo to respond to a hypothetical B797 (NMA)
to cover the segment between single aisle and widebodies ,(the middle of market)

sales chief Christian Scherer discrib it as “left-hook, right-hook approach”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-airbus-outlook/airbus-prepares-counter-punch-to-new-boeing-mid-sized-jet-idUSKCN1SR0OU

Given the big difference in capacity and weight between the two, how could the A21N and the A338 fill that gap ?
unless AB decides to aplly a deep modification for both : shrink the 338 ,decrease the weight and the engines thrust ,
stretch the A321 and increase the MTOW .IMO this going to be as expencive as a clean sheet project ,
to ends up with tweeked old generation aircrafts vs next generation one ,
we all know what happend last time AB went this way ;the 330neo vs the dreamliner
Airbus has no ongoing project ,why not simply going clean sheet too ?


I think the mistake here is assuming that Airbus expect to fill the gap. I think the strategy is to make the gap vanishingly small such that the business case for NMA is made unviable.

At the upper end I think it's right to say that the 787-8 is at least as much a "boundary" as the A338.
As an aside, I take it from your comment on the A330NEO vs the 787 that you have already made your mind up on the outcome.
I'm far from convinced that the fat lady has sung in this regard.
I believe the A330NEO to be a competitive product with a decent future ahead of it, even if it is highly unlikely to achieve parity with the 787.
From an NMA response viewpoint, all it needs to do is to keep the lid on the upper end

It is pretty clear that the A320 family has plenty of scope to develop into strong opposition from the lower end, even with some very simple tweaks like the proposed A321XLR. I think most readers would agree that this is where the "invasion" of NMA space by Airbus will come from.
The real strength of the A321NEO derivatives though comes from their inclusion in a much broader family.
Boeing make great play of production efficiencies for NMA, but there is no way it can compete with a plane being assembled on lines producing 70 frames per month in terms of economies of scale.

It is worth remembering the Golden rule (an a-net law no less, I'm led to believe) - all other things being equal, the smaller, more flexible airframe will predominate. Plenty of evidence to support that.

That, I think is Airbus's strategy

Rgds

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 10:53 am
by StTim
Every time Airbus improve the capability of the A321 they nibble away at the larger volume bottom end of the NMA market.

If they can strip some weight/capability from the A338 - perhaps produce a lightweight version (A337 - but how much would this cost?) - then they would nibble away at the top end.

We already know the business case is difficult to close.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 10:57 am
by luckyone
I realize we’re discussing different market spaces—but didn’t we already see this play out with the 787 vs. re-engined A330?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 11:26 am
by Armadillo1
StTim wrote:
If they can strip some weight/capability from the A338 - perhaps produce a lightweight version (A337 - but how much would this cost?) - then they would nibble away at the top end.
.

338Regional will be enough

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 11:30 am
by Revelation
Under different circumstances this would be good news for Boeing.

Under current circumstances Boeing IMHO can't take advantage of this news.

The money to pay for the MAX screw up has to come from somewhere, and launching an expensive clean sheet targeted at a challenging area of the market is not likely to happen in the near term, IMHO.

Thus Airbus is free to "make hay while the sun shines" and need not be aggressive in this space.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 11:41 am
by Polot
Armadillo1 wrote:
StTim wrote:
If they can strip some weight/capability from the A338 - perhaps produce a lightweight version (A337 - but how much would this cost?) - then they would nibble away at the top end.
.

338Regional will be enough

I’m not as confident about that as you are.

But right now Airbus can afford to wait as the MAX delays things for Boeing.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 11:48 am
by CRJ900
The A300B2/B4 was the original short-to-medium-haul 250-seat aircraft - why not dust off the blueprints for that one and NEO it plus some other aerodynamic tweaks and other enhancements... it is a much lighter aircraft than the made-for-long-haul A338/A339.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 11:49 am
by FluidFlow
I wonder if Airbus will just take the easy route and launch the A320/321 NWO (New Wing Option). If needed they then could stretch the 321 further. Then they do not need a MOM Aircraft to compete as the gap might be way too small to invest more, while the A320/321 + A220 family would cover the whole spectrum lower than MOM. Add cockpit similarity between A220 and A320 and you have a great product range even if it first mandates more training for pilots due to cockpit changes.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:01 pm
by Bricktop
scbriml wrote:
Waterbomber2 wrote:
This new sales chief is booking more cancellations than orders.
We'll see but I'm very skeptical.


How is that different to Boeing so far this year? :confused:

"But Boeing" whataboutism?

D+. Can do better.

Back onto the topic, ie what Airbus says... JL has said this exactly for ages. Nothing "news" here.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:11 pm
by keesje
The A330 NEO is an affordable, capable long haul platform, competing with the 787.
https://simpleflying.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/A339-7879-dimens-keesje_zps1afcfjgm-700x483.jpg
Not suitable for 2-7 hour flights, unless there is nothing else for moving 250-350 people.
It has the weight, capabilities and associated costs of a Long haul aircraft. NEO even more than CEO.

Image
Leeham news

The A321(X)LR / NEO, carries much less than a possible NMA. But it's light, available today
from a 60 aircraft per month line, with a choice of the most advanced GE & PW engines
and assembly in Europe, China and the USA. Hard to beat.

Airbus seems able to get some more MTOW out of the current (slightly strenghtened / modified) wing.
The new 101t MTOW make a moderate stretched A322 possible with still very useful range.

Image

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:31 pm
by jagraham
The A330CEO is according to Airbus more efficient than the A330NEO and the A350 for flights under 2 hours. That is clear proof of the role weight plays in short range flights.

And yes the A300 was significantly lighter. So the A300 / A332 can be made light enough to do what Boeing is looking at with the NMA - with a new wing and larger Pratt GTFs or purpose built Rolls Ultrafans. But how many sales will that bring? New wings are expensive.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:31 pm
by flipdewaf
astuteman wrote:
Rifitto wrote:
According to the article ,Airbus aims to offer a combo of the a330neo and a321neo to respond to a hypothetical B797 (NMA)
to cover the segment between single aisle and widebodies ,(the middle of market)

sales chief Christian Scherer discrib it as “left-hook, right-hook approach”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-airbus-outlook/airbus-prepares-counter-punch-to-new-boeing-mid-sized-jet-idUSKCN1SR0OU

Given the big difference in capacity and weight between the two, how could the A21N and the A338 fill that gap ?
unless AB decides to aplly a deep modification for both : shrink the 338 ,decrease the weight and the engines thrust ,
stretch the A321 and increase the MTOW .IMO this going to be as expencive as a clean sheet project ,
to ends up with tweeked old generation aircrafts vs next generation one ,
we all know what happend last time AB went this way ;the 330neo vs the dreamliner
Airbus has no ongoing project ,why not simply going clean sheet too ?


I think the mistake here is assuming that Airbus expect to fill the gap. I think the strategy is to make the gap vanishingly small such that the business case for NMA is made unviable.

At the upper end I think it's right to say that the 787-8 is at least as much a "boundary" as the A338.
As an aside, I take it from your comment on the A330NEO vs the 787 that you have already made your mind up on the outcome.
I'm far from convinced that the fat lady has sung in this regard.
I believe the A330NEO to be a competitive product with a decent future ahead of it, even if it is highly unlikely to achieve parity with the 787.
From an NMA response viewpoint, all it needs to do is to keep the lid on the upper end

It is pretty clear that the A320 family has plenty of scope to develop into strong opposition from the lower end, even with some very simple tweaks like the proposed A321XLR. I think most readers would agree that this is where the "invasion" of NMA space by Airbus will come from.
The real strength of the A321NEO derivatives though comes from their inclusion in a much broader family.
Boeing make great play of production efficiencies for NMA, but there is no way it can compete with a plane being assembled on lines producing 70 frames per month in terms of economies of scale.

It is worth remembering the Golden rule (an a-net law no less, I'm led to believe) - all other things being equal, the smaller, more flexible airframe will predominate. Plenty of evidence to support that.

That, I think is Airbus's strategy

Rgds

Yes, this is where/How I see it playing too. I believe the rule of thumb is about 13% cost reduction for each doubling of production scale so a realistically paced production of both models put airbus at about a 25% production cost advantage to the MOM, this is what it would have to claw back through its increased production efficiencies. I also think that it is in Airbus' interest not to push all the improvements at once that are available for the A32X, Boeing would have to keep guessing as to where or indeed if the improvements are coming and that is a much harder thing to plan a business case for.

luckyone wrote:
I realize we’re discussing different market spaces—but didn’t we already see this play out with the 787 vs. re-engined A330?
I think we have seen this before but in a slightly different market.

A new niche model with a unique fuselage design struggling with the gate width limitation vs a re-engined increased weight lean aircraft with a high wing loading and relatively high production rates.

Fred

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:36 pm
by Bricktop
Revelation wrote:
Under different circumstances this would be good news for Boeing.

Under current circumstances Boeing IMHO can't take advantage of this news.

The money to pay for the MAX screw up has to come from somewhere, and launching an expensive clean sheet targeted at a challenging area of the market is not likely to happen in the near term, IMHO.

Thus Airbus is free to "make hay while the sun shines" and need not be aggressive in this space.

Probably, but it is a strategy born of weakness. Heaven forfend Boeing stops the stock buybacks and shows a little humility on the bonus front right now. Investing in the NMA and real rather than financial engineering should be the way forward. I suspect the gutless executives with an eye and a half on Wall Street won't see things my way though. Forget suspect, know.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:55 pm
by DartHerald
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:59 pm
by astuteman
flipdewaf wrote:
Yes, this is where/How I see it playing too. I believe the rule of thumb is about 13% cost reduction for each doubling of production scale so a realistically paced production of both models put airbus at about a 25% production cost advantage to the MOM, this is what it would have to claw back through its increased production efficiencies. I also think that it is in Airbus' interest not to push all the improvements at once that are available for the A32X, Boeing would have to keep guessing as to where or indeed if the improvements are coming and that is a much harder thing to plan a business case for.

Fred


I completely see the economies of scale of 60+ per month production as a big card for the A321NEO derivatives.

It is a constraint as well though.
As soon as Airbus start to push product characteristics unique to a derivative in MOM space (bigger wing, new MLG, different engines) then that economy of scale rapidly starts to disappear.
That's why I think we're seeing, and will continue to see, the "cooking" A321 platform being pushed as hard as possible without significant baseline deviations.

Thus I think the c. 101t 4 700Nm A321XLR is about as far as I think they will be able to go.
An interesting philosophical discussion would be whether a 101t A321XLR based A322 "simple stretch" would be considered a major deviation, or just another length derivative.
My initial thought is it is probably the latter, but dependent upon whether it challenges FAL capacities in any great way.
Whether it adds to pressure on NMA is a separate philosophical discussion.

Rgds

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:16 pm
by astuteman
DartHerald wrote:
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?


For me that raises the question of why there is a "MOM gap" in the first place.
Both the A300/A310 and 767 clearly originally filled that MOM gap, but have over time been displaced from the market, and significantly are not being considered for re-engine by either manufacturer. The original short range A330's are now long-range ones.
The question is "why"?

I don't think the question of "Is a narrowbody-widebody gap a natural state of affairs?" has been properly addressed yet.
The market has clearly evolved that way for a reason.
It feels to me like the advancing capabilities of the huge quantity of narrowbodys has continually "bow-waved" the smaller widebodys out of the way above them - classic fragmentation. Hence the focus by Airbus on ever more capable A321 derivatives.

e.g. The bulk of shorter NMA missions can be served by cheap-as-chips narrowbodys with huge commonality in the worldwide fleet, offering more flexibility at difficult to match acquisition and operating costs.
The longer NMA missions can be served by an A330/787 that also has the flexibility to cover off all of the required long haul capability an airline might need. What natural space does this leave for NMA?

That for me is the NMA conundrum. My personal jury is still out. Already had lots of popcorn. Think I need to nip out and get some more..

Rgds

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:18 pm
by Polot
DartHerald wrote:
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?

The original A330 was underranged because its MTOW was purposely gimped to protect the A340 and give the two planes clear defined roles. The base airframe was not significantly lighter than now (in fact it might have been heavier, not sure)- all that A340 stuff was baked into the design at the start. That, of course, is the major reason why Airbus has been able to boost its MTOW so much from initial variant. The original A330 was a poorly optimized airframe since it was designed to support the heavy (relative to the A330) A340 using the same basic platform.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:20 pm
by flipdewaf
astuteman wrote:
flipdewaf wrote:
Yes, this is where/How I see it playing too. I believe the rule of thumb is about 13% cost reduction for each doubling of production scale so a realistically paced production of both models put airbus at about a 25% production cost advantage to the MOM, this is what it would have to claw back through its increased production efficiencies. I also think that it is in Airbus' interest not to push all the improvements at once that are available for the A32X, Boeing would have to keep guessing as to where or indeed if the improvements are coming and that is a much harder thing to plan a business case for.

Fred


I completely see the economies of scale of 60+ per month production as a big card for the A321NEO derivatives.

It is a constraint as well though.
As soon as Airbus start to push product characteristics unique to a derivative in MOM space (bigger wing, new MLG, different engines) then that economy of scale rapidly starts to disappear.
That's why I think we're seeing, and will continue to see, the "cooking" A321 platform being pushed as hard as possible without significant baseline deviations.

Thus I think the c. 101t 4 700Nm A321XLR is about as far as I think they will be able to go.
An interesting philosophical discussion would be whether a 101t A321XLR based A322 "simple stretch" would be considered a major deviation, or just another length derivative.
My initial thought is it is probably the latter, but dependent upon whether it challenges FAL capacities in any great way.
Whether it adds to pressure on NMA is a separate philosophical discussion.

Rgds


I think you are right on the limits of the A321 platform in terms of weights but the way Airbus has incrementally grown casts doubt on whether this is the limits in terms of weight and particularly length I would be surprised if the capability wasn't already baked in to the FALs as they had already talked about a stretch many moons ago. The business case for Boeing becomes much harder if they have a target of what the A32X could be and not what it is.

For sure one of the worst things airbus could do is remove the commonality of the A32X line by adding a new wing or different gear, if anything is new it needs doing across the board.

Fred

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:30 pm
by Revelation
Bricktop wrote:
Probably, but it is a strategy born of weakness. Heaven forfend Boeing stops the stock buybacks and shows a little humility on the bonus front right now. Investing in the NMA and real rather than financial engineering should be the way forward. I suspect the gutless executives with an eye and a half on Wall Street won't see things my way though. Forget suspect, know.

I agree that engineering is the way forward, but the issue is the market they've been targeting with NMA has been a challenge right from the start, and they may have had the luxury to give that market a go before the MAX tragedy, yet now what they really need is a market that is a no-brainer just like what 787 had, and if MAX cannot regain market confidence they really won't have the resources to do NMA.

I've read from Leeham et al that Boeing does feel they need NMA to be able to prove out the technology they would use for NSA, but the MAX situation may have taken away the luxury of using NMA as a trial run for NSA. In fact it's hard for me to see how they can put so much resources into NMA given the MAX situation.

We could end up in a sequence where:
    o Airbus's announcement of A320neo forces Boeing to do MAX in a hurry
    o Boeing rushes and botches MAX so Boeing has to switch to NSA in a hurry
    o Airbus can't compete against NSA with A320 so Airbus has to launch NSR in a hurry
In theory, Airbus's transition to A320neo results in an earlier than desired exit for the A320 family.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:36 pm
by cledaybuck
Revelation wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
Probably, but it is a strategy born of weakness. Heaven forfend Boeing stops the stock buybacks and shows a little humility on the bonus front right now. Investing in the NMA and real rather than financial engineering should be the way forward. I suspect the gutless executives with an eye and a half on Wall Street won't see things my way though. Forget suspect, know.

I agree that engineering is the way forward, but the issue is the market they've been targeting with NMA has been a challenge right from the start, and they may have had the luxury to give that market a go before the MAX tragedy, yet now what they really need is a market that is a no-brainer just like what 787 had, and if MAX cannot regain market confidence they really won't have the resources to do NMA.

I've read from Leeham et al that Boeing does feel they need NMA to be able to prove out the technology they would use for NSA, but the MAX situation may have taken away the luxury of using NMA as a trial run for NSA. In fact it's hard for me to see how they can put so much resources into NMA given the MAX situation.

We could end up in a sequence where:
    o Airbus's announcement of A320neo forces Boeing to do MAX in a hurry
    o Boeing rushes and botches MAX so Boeing has to switch to NSA in a hurry
    o Airbus can't compete against NSA with A320 so Airbus has to launch NSR in a hurry
In theory, Airbus's transition to A320neo results in an earlier than desired exit for the A320 family.

I've seen this on here before, but did Boeing really screw up on the MAX because of time? It seems to me that it was keeping commonality and training to a minimum that was the genesis of the screw up and no amount of extra time would have made any difference.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:37 pm
by lightsaber
luckyone wrote:
I realize we’re discussing different market spaces—but didn’t we already see this play out with the 787 vs. re-engined A330?

Yes.

The A321N will continue to sell exceptionally.

Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

Lightsaber

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:43 pm
by leghorn
lightsaber wrote:
Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

A Volvo XC90 is competitive with a Range Rover in that it is capable of doing over 90% of the same things at 60 to 70% of the price.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:43 pm
by Revelation
cledaybuck wrote:
I've seen this on here before, but did Boeing really screw up on the MAX because of time? It seems to me that it was keeping commonality and training to a minimum that was the genesis of the screw up and no amount of extra time would have made any difference.

I don't want to go too far down the MCAS rat hole, but the Seattle Times certainly has raised the issue of the amount of pressure FAA felt to get through certification as quickly as possible. Without this amount of time pressure perhaps we would have had a more thorough review and/or a better opportunity for someone to call BS on many of the things MCAS got wrong and that Boeing is now fixing.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:45 pm
by Weatherwatcher1
From the article

“Those programs are both so mature that it gives Airbus pricing flexibility to address this middle-of-the-market segment,” sales chief Christian Scherer said.

He promised what he described as a “left-hook, right-hook approach” to that part of the market, using the two Airbus jets, as airlines replace Boeing 757 and some larger 767 aircraft.



Sounds like Airbus will compete with weight changes and aggressive pricing due to the maturity of the A330neo and A321neo. Sounds like a reasonable strategy. The A321 MTOW upgrades seem forthcoming. The aircraft values thread shows how high of a price the A321neo is commanding. I think it explains why airlines aren’t converting A320neo orders to A321neos to meet the 50:50 production goals even though there likely is market demand. The good news is that there is plenty of margin for the A321neo pricing to drop with time to block NMA sales.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:52 pm
by astuteman
lightsaber wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I realize we’re discussing different market spaces—but didn’t we already see this play out with the 787 vs. re-engined A330?

Yes.

The A321N will continue to sell exceptionally.

Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

Lightsaber


Depends what you mean by "competitive". I don't think any of us expect the A330NEO to achieve parity with the 787, but it is way too soon to call "game over" for the A330NEO in my opinion.

Rgds

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:02 pm
by cledaybuck
Revelation wrote:
cledaybuck wrote:
I've seen this on here before, but did Boeing really screw up on the MAX because of time? It seems to me that it was keeping commonality and training to a minimum that was the genesis of the screw up and no amount of extra time would have made any difference.

I don't want to go too far down the MCAS rat hole, but the Seattle Times certainly has raised the issue of the amount of pressure FAA felt to get through certification as quickly as possible. Without this amount of time pressure perhaps we would have had a more thorough review and/or a better opportunity for someone to call BS on many of the things MCAS got wrong and that Boeing is now fixing.

Maybe. I tend to think that the mindset on no additional training wouldn't have changed, but we can never really know.

Anyway, back on topic, I believe the strategy of using the A321 will work just fine and the A330 not at all (assuming the NMA ever gets launched).

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:02 pm
by 727200
Both the 321 and 330 are old technology that Airbus is trying to pass off as newest and greatist. Lets see how fast the sales trickle once the 797 is launched.

At the end of the day, you can put lipstick on a pig, but its still a pig.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:06 pm
by DartHerald
Polot wrote:
DartHerald wrote:
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?

The original A330 was underranged because its MTOW was purposely gimped to protect the A340 and give the two planes clear defined roles. The base airframe was not significantly lighter than now (in fact it might have been heavier, not sure)- all that A340 stuff was baked into the design at the start. That, of course, is the major reason why Airbus has been able to boost its MTOW so much from initial variant. The original A330 was a poorly optimized airframe since it was designed to support the heavy (relative to the A330) A340 using the same basic platform.


But isn't that my point? If, as you say , it was poorly optimised for long haul, could it not be optimised now the other way for shorter haul?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:09 pm
by Elementalism
Rifitto wrote:
According to the article ,Airbus aims to offer a combo of the a330neo and a321neo to respond to a hypothetical B797 (NMA)
to cover the segment between single aisle and widebodies ,(the middle of market)

sales chief Christian Scherer discrib it as “left-hook, right-hook approach”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-airbus-outlook/airbus-prepares-counter-punch-to-new-boeing-mid-sized-jet-idUSKCN1SR0OU

Given the big difference in capacity and weight between the two, how could the A21N and the A338 fill that gap ?
unless AB decides to aplly a deep modification for both : shrink the 338 ,decrease the weight and the engines thrust ,
stretch the A321 and increase the MTOW .IMO this going to be as expencive as a clean sheet project ,
to ends up with tweeked old generation aircrafts vs next generation one ,
we all know what happend last time AB went this way ;the 330neo vs the dreamliner
Airbus has no ongoing project ,why not simply going clean sheet too ?


It all depends what the 797 turns out to be. But with it sounding more and more like it is a 767-200\300 replacement. The A321 wont have the capacity. The A330 will be too big. The A330 Neo is having a hard enough time competing with the 787. I dont see how it will compete with the more optimized 797.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:10 pm
by Elementalism
flee wrote:
If Boeing is having a hard time justifying the business case for NMA, Airbus will find it even harder to do so. As it is Airbus already has a competitive product at the lower end of the market and only needs to listen to their customers' requirements to optimise the A321Neo further to suit their needs.

I am not sure about the upper end of the NMA market, though. The A338Neo is probably less optimised than the A321Neo and needs major modifications to meet the needs of the NMA markets. Airbus will not need to spend as much on these modifications - both the A321 and the A330 feature mature technology and the technical risks are lower.

Boeing's NMA is not going to feature new technology either - it will borrow from the 777X, 787 and Max. That is how Boeing plans to keep costs down to make it a better business proposition.


It should have newer engines. Which is a big LEAP forward. Pun intended.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:13 pm
by NZ321
They are only old technology once the 797 is launched and Boeing redefine the parameters. Until then it's open game and Airbus seems to be playing it well at the moment for minimal expenditure. I wouldn't define either the A321 or the A330 as a "pig". What's your point?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:18 pm
by 767333ER
727200 wrote:
Both the 321 and 330 are old technology that Airbus is trying to pass off as newest and greatist. Lets see how fast the sales trickle once the 797 is launched.

At the end of the day, you can put lipstick on a pig, but its still a pig.

Why has the MAX sold well to this point then, that’s the oldest pig of them all!

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:19 pm
by lightsaber
leghorn wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

A Volvo XC90 is competitive with a Range Rover in that it is capable of doing over 90% of the same things at 60 to 70% of the price.

Exactly. The 797 will cost 80% of an A330N and have the latest tech. For larger, we already know the A330N has issues vs. the 787.

The whole delay in 797 has been build price.

Lightsaber

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:19 pm
by WeatherPilot
Airbus should just bring back the A310 with a new engine creating the A310neo.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:21 pm
by MIflyer12
leghorn wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

A Volvo XC90 is competitive with a Range Rover in that it is capable of doing over 90% of the same things at 60 to 70% of the price.


It gets to the fundamental value of the technology. Do lightweighting & new engines have value in the 250-passenger/1500-4500sm space? Does that value justify a sizable new investment? Airbus is, in effect, acknowledging it will try to succeed commercially on cheaper but inferior planes. (Working your metaphor: Do people really want to pay for the off-road capability of a Land Rover or are they happy faking it with the XC90?) That didn't work with the original A350 (before the much more ambitious XWB variant). It didn't work with the A330Neo. If Boeing has grievously overestimated the size of the market (as Airbus did with the A380) it might work here.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:28 pm
by frigatebird
keesje wrote:
The A330 NEO is an affordable, capable long haul platform, competing with the 787.
https://simpleflying.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/A339-7879-dimens-keesje_zps1afcfjgm-700x483.jpg
Not suitable for 2-7 hour flights, unless there is nothing else for moving 250-350 people.
It has the weight, capabilities and associated costs of a Long haul aircraft. NEO even more than CEO.

Agreed.
keesje wrote:
The A321(X)LR / NEO, carries much less than a possible NMA. But it's light, available today
from a 60 aircraft per month line, with a choice of the most advanced GE & PW engines
and assembly in Europe, China and the USA. Hard to beat.

Airbus seems able to get some more MTOW out of the current (slightly strenghtened / modified) wing.
The new 101t MTOW make a moderate stretched A322 possible with still very useful range.

I agree with you here too, though a hypothetical 797 would mean the A321N wouldn't have the most advanced engines any more. But the 797's engine advantage wouldn't be enough, it must be significantly more economical than the A321N, not just on a per seat basis but likely even on a per frame basis.

astuteman wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
Yes.

The A321N will continue to sell exceptionally.

Thinking the A330N is competitive vs. a new design shows somewhere a mall is missing its Ninja.

Lightsaber


Depends what you mean by "competitive". I don't think any of us expect the A330NEO to achieve parity with the 787, but it is way too soon to call "game over" for the A330NEO in my opinion.

Rgds

Not yet, and with DL, EK, TP and AirasiaX among the (future) operators of the A339, that model certainly has gained acceptance on the marketplace. Certainly more orders will follow. Not yet convinced of the A338 though.

The advantage of the A330neo over the 787 was pricing, but the increased production of the 787 meant Boeing could counter this advantage (for now). Which does show how much of an uphill struggle the 797 will have, with the production rates the A32x can maintain.

btw nice to see your comments again on this site, dear Astuteman :bigthumbsup:

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:31 pm
by Elementalism
astuteman wrote:
DartHerald wrote:
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?


For me that raises the question of why there is a "MOM gap" in the first place.
Both the A300/A310 and 767 clearly originally filled that MOM gap, but have over time been displaced from the market, and significantly are not being considered for re-engine by either manufacturer. The original short range A330's are now long-range ones.
The question is "why"?

I don't think the question of "Is a narrowbody-widebody gap a natural state of affairs?" has been properly addressed yet.
The market has clearly evolved that way for a reason.
It feels to me like the advancing capabilities of the huge quantity of narrowbodys has continually "bow-waved" the smaller widebodys out of the way above them - classic fragmentation. Hence the focus by Airbus on ever more capable A321 derivatives.

e.g. The bulk of shorter NMA missions can be served by cheap-as-chips narrowbodys with huge commonality in the worldwide fleet, offering more flexibility at difficult to match acquisition and operating costs.
The longer NMA missions can be served by an A330/787 that also has the flexibility to cover off all of the required long haul capability an airline might need. What natural space does this leave for NMA?

That for me is the NMA conundrum. My personal jury is still out. Already had lots of popcorn. Think I need to nip out and get some more..

Rgds


There is a definite gap between the A321\737 and A330\787. And with traffic increasing there will be a need for an aircraft that can carry 225-270 people on short and long narrow routes. Something that a 787\A330 is too much aircraft and the 737\A321 not enough.

In a perfect world the 757-200\300 or 767-200 would fill this void. But they havent been produced in 15 years. And need a NEO\MAX option to remain competitive. That isn't happening. Right now for me the obvious business case is being made by Airbus releasing new extended range options for the A321. The airlines are clamoring for this MOM and the A321 is the only current plane capable of trying to fill the void.

It seems to me that routes are being upgauged. And into the busiest airports the airlines may be slot limited. So they need to bring in bigger equipment to make up for the loss of frequency. Over the next 30 years I absolutely could see a 3000-4000 frame run for an aircraft like the proposes 797. India and China are just getting started in their airline boom..

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 2:54 pm
by keesje
727200 wrote:
Both the 321 and 330 are old technology that Airbus is trying to pass off as newest and greatist. Lets see how fast the sales trickle once the 797 is launched.

At the end of the day, you can put lipstick on a pig, but its still a pig.


Problem for Boeing is, the A321 is not a pig, contrary. It's putting both the MAX & NMA (business case) under immense pressure & even loyal Boeing customers can hardly afford not to order. (think Ryanair, AirCanada, JAL, United, fewer left every year). The MAX being grounded for a thorough, international product & certification review doesn't help at all.

Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N
suggest Airbus are a kind of in the defensive position, perception not reality.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 3:01 pm
by InsideMan
DL757NYC wrote:
Boeing offered a rewinged 757 with new engines to airlines and they all came back with they wanted something 20 percent larger than the 757. The A330 and 321 would not be able to compete with that offering. If Boeing delivers a product the airlines are asking for Airbus wouldn’t be able to compete. The A330 is too large and the 321 is too small.


The difference is both are fully financed and appreciated and any $ above manfacturing price (plus overhead) is profit whereas Boeing has to finance the full development of a 797. This will give Airbus a lot more flexibility to adjust their pricing to be on par or better with any Boeing 797 offer on all routes the 797 would cover. That was my argument against the 797 business case from the very beginning.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 3:56 pm
by SelseyBill
WeatherPilot wrote:
Airbus should just bring back the A310 with a new engine creating the A310neo.


..........or a A330-200 shrink with de-rated engine and weight loss programme.........I call it the A330-100CEO.........

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 5:15 pm
by Polot
DartHerald wrote:
Polot wrote:
DartHerald wrote:
What puzzles me is that when the A330 was originally introduced it was thought to be under-ranged, not too far above what is required for the NMA class, and grew over the course of time (including putting on weight) to where it is now.. Would it not be possible to revert to that original airframe (lightened some more by the removal of the A340-related stuff) maybe with further modifications to reduce the weight and beef it up for more cycles?

The original A330 was underranged because its MTOW was purposely gimped to protect the A340 and give the two planes clear defined roles. The base airframe was not significantly lighter than now (in fact it might have been heavier, not sure)- all that A340 stuff was baked into the design at the start. That, of course, is the major reason why Airbus has been able to boost its MTOW so much from initial variant. The original A330 was a poorly optimized airframe since it was designed to support the heavy (relative to the A330) A340 using the same basic platform.


But isn't that my point? If, as you say , it was poorly optimised for long haul, could it not be optimised now the other way for shorter haul?

It is a lot easier to add then take away. Optimizing the A330 for short haul means you are starting to quickly look at a new aircraft.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 5:47 pm
by Prost
A330-200NEO rewinged and engined perhaps, but that would be costly.

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 5:50 pm
by Devilfish
Polot wrote:
It is a lot easier to add then take away. Optimizing the A330 for short haul means you are starting to quickly look at a new aircraft.

Might as well build an optimised A300N or A310N from scratch...which Airbus is under no compulsion to do.


Prost wrote:
A330-200NEO rewinged and engined perhaps, but that would be costly.

Sounds a lot like the A338 save for the wing...which as they say is overkill for shorter ranges...no?

Re: Reuters : Airbus to counter the "NMA"by the existing 330neo and the A21N

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 5:53 pm
by par13del
Revelation wrote:
The money to pay for the MAX screw up has to come from somewhere, and launching an expensive clean sheet targeted at a challenging area of the market is not likely to happen in the near term, IMHO.

If, as per A.Net wisdom, the USA Congress is in Boeing's pocket, they could use the MAX issue to make a case for Launch Aid to allow them to remain competitive with Airbus and preserve USA jobs. The financial liabilities created by the crash and the groundings and the perceived notion that folks will shy away from purchasing or travelling on a MAX a/c can be used to create a case, and if you are already preaching to the choir.......
The USA congress did offer financial assistance to the Big 3 Automakers and did make a profit doing so, so.....

Just a thought.