dik909 wrote:Sorry if this has already been addressed in this thread and I missed it, but: If airlines are so swiftly phasing out their 4-engine aircraft (A380, B747), then why is LH hanging onto their A340 fleet for so long ?
The A340-300 is LH's smallest long haul aircraft currently, rivaled in trip costs only by the A350-900, of which LH has only very limited numbers. So the A340 has remained (in small numbers) to maintain their worldwide network while minimizing losses. LH's and LX's A330 are all of the lower MTOW variants, which makes them usable for TATL flights but unsuitable for flights to eastern Asia. The A340-300 is slightly less efficient than the A330-300, but not much.
The reason why the 747 and A380 are being phased out/parked so quickly is their very large passenger capacity (for which there is no demand) and their comparatively small cargo capacity (for which there is significant demand). The 747-8 is the exception since it outperforms other aircraft in both cargo volume and weight, and also has the latest engine model.
The bulk of LH's current network is served by the 747-8, A343 and A359. If long haul demand remains as low as it is, we can expect more cancelled flights and heavier reliance on the A350. However, there are no plans to park the entire A343 fleet this year.