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keesje
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Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:12 pm

AF/KLM: “We have told Airbus for a long time that we would be very interested in a stretched A220 as an A320 replacement, but discussions are preliminary so far,” said Ben Smith, CEO of the Air France/KLM group, in Paris.

Airbus CCO Christian Scherer “It’s not a question of if, but when a stretched A220 will become the successor of our narrowbody A320 family, these plans have existed since Bombardier started initial designs for the CSeries” – the aircraft’s original branding before Airbus took over the program in 2017.

Scherer estimates the stretch might happen in a time frame of about five years. While the A220-300 can transport up to 160 passengers in a dense layout, a stretched version would add six rows of seats, extending capacity to close to 200 seats in a one-class layout or about 180 in a two-class configuration.

https://www.airlineratings.com/news/air ... lace-a320/

I seems the A220 already proves successful in replacing 737-700 and A319 as preferred options in the market. Markets like Europe are relatively short haul, 3 hours covers almost everything. On top of that, there are A321's, A320s, MAX's all around if a airlines need more capacity-range for routes.

Main constrain for A220 market penetration remains: availability / production rates. Airbus is aggressive pushing, investing to realize rate 14 in 2025 years, up from 5 a month today.

I assume there always will be thousands of A320NEOs and the A321NEO keeps growing marketshare. But A319NEO continuity looks bleak, this now also seems to be the case for the A220-100..

Image
keesje

As discussed elsewhere (https://leehamnews.com/2021/09/28/airbu ... cut-costs/) an A320.5 might replace A320 as center point in the NB portfolio. That would mean the A320 becoming the smallest A320 family option on offer.

Scherer's A220300 (and A220-500) seatcount numbers seem optimistics compared with what we see in operation, but A220-300's at 145 seats and possible A220-500s at 165-170 seats, seem realistic. Also far as the qoute "replacing the A320 family" is probably a translation error. However if an airline already committed to A321s, (as many have) an expanded A220 family could probably replace aging 737-700, 737-800, A319, A320 fleets for some (not all) airlines.

Image
Airbus

It would basically mean Airbus bumping up both the A220 and A320 family variants, meeting changed market requirements. Scherer is mentioning 2026.
Last edited by keesje on Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
planecane
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:33 pm

Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.
 
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Taxi645
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:42 pm

planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


This has been answered so many times in this forum already. If Airbus can replace a A320 slot with an A220-500, another slot opens for whatever even higher margin product Airbus produces above the A320 by that time.
 
FluidFlow
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:43 pm

planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.
 
777Mech
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:48 pm

A 180 seat A225?? Paging DL....
 
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Revelation
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 3:52 pm

FluidFlow wrote:
planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.

If it were this simple then Airbus would be committing to it now, rather than not making a commitment and suggesting perhaps five years from now.

Instead what we see Airbus doing is investing in more A32x capacity in TLS and waiting/hoping for A22x to stand on its own financially.

This is classic carrot/stick behavior.

There's a lot more at play here than meets the eye.
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:08 pm

Revelation wrote:
FluidFlow wrote:
planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.

If it were this simple then Airbus would be committing to it now, rather than not making a commitment and suggesting perhaps five years from now.

Instead what we see Airbus doing is investing in more A32x capacity in TLS and waiting/hoping for A22x to stand on its own financially.

This is classic carrot/stick behavior.

There's a lot more at play here than meets the eye.


Well said. The level of shenanigans going on here is world class.
 
ScottB
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:21 pm

FluidFlow wrote:
If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.


Investors care far less about gross profit than they do about margin, and in the scenario you propose, just selling the A320 and A321 will produce higher margin than selling three aircraft. Further, it ignores more rational commercial decisions on the part of Airbus to either eschew the A320 sale and sell two A321s (since the demand is there and overall profit/margin would be higher) or to expand A320 manufacturing capacity in order to capture that additional sale in the A320/A225 segment.

It only makes sense to use the A225 to address the segment occupied by A320neo if Airbus can achieve similar margins for the A225 or there's some logistical reason why they cannot expand A320 production to meet that demand (and I cannot imagine what that might be given they have successfully expanded assembly to several sites globally).
 
f4f3a
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:22 pm

Think air France has been pushing for a larger capacity 220 as well. I imagine they could get more profits rmargin on selling the larger a/c too
 
BrianDromey
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:27 pm

AF/KL have been very vocal on the A225. They will be the largest European operator of the A220, their JV partner DL the largest worldwide.
AF are interesting, like Swiss and Air Canada they have early A319s and gone down the A220 route. Alitalia also have a sizeable A319 fleet which will be replaced with A220s at ITA. Similarly AirBaltic replaced 737-300s with A223s. Much of the market has spoken and elected to upgrade from 130-150 seat A318/319s to 180 A320 and 220 seat A321s. Some airlines do see a role in their network for aircraft in the 130-150 seat range, which the A220 fits very well.

I think the A220-500 might be used if/when Boeing were to launch a successor to the 737. As some other posters have said, Airbus could optimise the A320 family for the NSA space and use the A220 in the 73G replacement space. I think Boeing are boxed-in here, can one airplane family exceed an airbus offering containing an A220-500 and a re-winged A320.5 (200 seat all-Y) and A321?
 
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24Whiskey
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:27 pm

f4f3a wrote:
Think air France has been pushing for a larger capacity 220 as well. I imagine they could get more profits rmargin on selling the larger a/c too


At this point I think every major A220 operator has been pushing for a -500 behind the scenes.
 
FriscoHeavy
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:32 pm

24Whiskey wrote:
f4f3a wrote:
Think air France has been pushing for a larger capacity 220 as well. I imagine they could get more profits rmargin on selling the larger a/c too


At this point I think every major A220 operator has been pushing for a -500 behind the scenes.


Link?
 
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Revelation
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 4:56 pm

24Whiskey wrote:
f4f3a wrote:
Think air France has been pushing for a larger capacity 220 as well. I imagine they could get more profits rmargin on selling the larger a/c too

At this point I think every major A220 operator has been pushing for a -500 behind the scenes.

Of course they are, it would only increase the value of what they have already invested in their A220 infrastructure, even if they never bought a -500.

All the MD-95 / Boeing 717 operators also wanted a stretch, but Boeing never obliged them.

In the big picture view the A320 family backlog is still about 50:50 with A320 and A321.

Airbus is not going to "churn" that backlog by announcing an A220-500 any time soon, especially till A220 shows it can make a decent profit for them.

It's not just me saying that, it's also what Airbus's CCO is saying in the first post of this thread.

Seems to me there's no actual news in this new thread, but the pretty pictures are always welcome.
 
smartplane
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:26 pm

FluidFlow wrote:
planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.

Is this still the Airbus position as at today?

Only 'makes sense' if the per unit return for the A220 is comparable to the A32 within an acceptable timeframe. A larger A220 delays that moment. As Plancecane stated, the 2 product lines are competing with themselves.

The A32 family currently funds ALL new Airbus civil aircraft developments. If Airbus sees better returns from two NB product families, with range overlap, and no easy route to customer operating compatibility (at least A33NEO and A35 offer significant production and operating commonality), they are making it easier for Boeing to sell the MAX, and a MAX successor to customers in the future.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:28 pm

Revelation wrote:
Seems to me there's no actual news in this new thread, but the pretty pictures are always welcome.


Whereas Airbus Chief Commercial Aircraft, Christian Scherer, said last June that the airframer has no plans to offer more versions of the A220, he said now that it will be a matter of time when the airframer will offer a stretched A220.


https://airinsight.com/a220-opens-a-new ... ir-france/

Airbus even mentions 2025, a lenght. A significant changed message. KLM and AF have been passing on NEO's and MAX's for a decade. No doubt they'll order a load of A321NEO's. But that isn't the end of the story.

Also e.g. UA, DL, AA and many others skipped A320NEO's.. it would be interesting to compare the numbers of A320NEO ordered / converted against the A321NEO over the last 4 years. Scherer isn't blind but says what fits the current status.
Last edited by keesje on Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Taxi645
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:35 pm

Airbus in the future will again most likely be production limited on the A320. It is quite possible that by that time the required rate to fullfill narket will be so high that it will be a too large share of the Airbus bussiness.

If ever there would be problem with the A320 (future tech incompatibility, safety issue/ new standard, replacement need etc.) your risking too much of your bussiness.

At a certain point the minimum extra efficiency of just increasing the rate vs diversifying the risk doesn't way up anymore.
 
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FLALEFTY
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:49 pm

AF/KLM Group has 44 A320's & 116 B738's in their inventories. The A320's are configured with 174 seats in a single class. The B738's are configured with 189 seats in a single class. The average age of the A320 fleet 12.1 years and the B738 fleet is 11.7 years.

https://www.planespotters.net/airline/Air-France-KLM

To replace both mid-sized types would require a significant stretch of the A223 to accommodate the missions flown by these legacy types. An uprated engine would be required, landing gear would have to be modified and a fair amount of wind tunnel time would be needed to work out the aerodynamic tweaks. None of this is in the "too-hard pile", but it will take time and money. If they started now (highly unlikely) I imagine they might be able to deliver sometime in 2026, or 2027. All this in an attempt to replace the well-established A320NEO's that do the same missions and are in production.

One of the reasons that Airbus took over the (troubled) BCS program was to tap into the program's design work, especially in the heavy use of composite structures. The longer-term plan was for Airbus to use this engineering knowledge to help in designing the ultimate replacement for the A32X series. I would think that Airbus might be looking to start such a program in the next couple of years?
 
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Revelation
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 5:49 pm

keesje wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Seems to me there's no actual news in this new thread, but the pretty pictures are always welcome.

Whereas Airbus Chief Commercial Aircraft, Christian Scherer, said last June that the airframer has no plans to offer more versions of the A220, he said now that it will be a matter of time when the airframer will offer a stretched A220.


https://airinsight.com/a220-opens-a-new ... ir-france/

Airbus even mentions 2025, a lenght. A significant changed message. KLM and AF have been passing on NEO's and MAX's for a decade. No doubt they'll order a load of A321NEO's. But that isn't the end of the story.

Also e.g. UA, DL, AA and many others skipped A320NEO's.. it would be interesting to compare the numbers of A320NEO ordered / converted against the A321NEO over the last 4 years. Scherer isn't blind but says what fits the current status.

The 'when not if' messaging goes back to 2019 if not earlier so it's not news ( ref: https://simpleflying.com/airbus-a220-stretch/ ).

Your linked article only mentions 2025 in the context of AF's plans, not Airbus's.

Your thread starter only says:

Scherer estimates the stretch might happen in a time frame of about five years

No mention of 2025.

Still not finding any news, but thanks for the pretty pictures, they are always welcome!
 
majano
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 6:05 pm

Revelation wrote:
keesje wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Seems to me there's no actual news in this new thread, but the pretty pictures are always welcome.

Whereas Airbus Chief Commercial Aircraft, Christian Scherer, said last June that the airframer has no plans to offer more versions of the A220, he said now that it will be a matter of time when the airframer will offer a stretched A220.


https://airinsight.com/a220-opens-a-new ... ir-france/

Airbus even mentions 2025, a lenght. A significant changed message. KLM and AF have been passing on NEO's and MAX's for a decade. No doubt they'll order a load of A321NEO's. But that isn't the end of the story.

Also e.g. UA, DL, AA and many others skipped A320NEO's.. it would be interesting to compare the numbers of A320NEO ordered / converted against the A321NEO over the last 4 years. Scherer isn't blind but says what fits the current status.

The 'when not if' messaging goes back to 2019 if not earlier so it's not news ( ref: https://simpleflying.com/airbus-a220-stretch/ ).

Your linked article only mentions 2025 in the context of AF's plans, not Airbus's.

Your thread starter only says:

Scherer estimates the stretch might happen in a time frame of about five years

No mention of 2025.

Still not finding any news, but thanks for the pretty pictures, they are always welcome!

Shouldn't you be taking this up with Airinsidgt instead of repeating the same thing over and over again?
 
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FiscAutTecGarte
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 6:14 pm

Revelation wrote:
Airbus is not going to "churn" that backlog by announcing an A220-500 any time soon, especially till A220 shows it can make a decent profit for them.


Operators may be happy to buy an A220-500 for nearly the same price they pay for the A320 because of the improved fuel economy. What would that do for profitability of the A220 program? Just seems weird to have the two production sites (Mirabel and Mobil) with no plants to really scale production (I'm aware of the history of the Max7/A220 DL complaint). Would a 2023/2024 launch with a 2025/2026 EIS 'churn' that A320 backlog significantly?

I'm curious about the whole A220 push (volume and profitability) becuase it does clear Airbus to grow the A320 family upwards, especially as they consider adopting a new wing. It allows for some good aircraft family optimisations, covering 120-170pax / shorter range narrow body market with the A220 (100,300,500) family... and then the 175-250pax longer range narrow body market with the A320 family (320.5, 321, 322). Maybe the will still offer the A320, much the same way the still build the A319, but perhaps future A320 family development will feature higher capacities and longer ranges..

(It's funny... Most of us just assume Airbus will reduex (New Wing/Engine PIP) the A320 family instead of replacing it. Where as we clamor for the MAX to be replaced)

Does anyone have any idea just how much money they are losing on each A220-300 produced? Is it just almost unsurmountable? Is it material choices? Totally inefficient building methods? High labor costs? Too low of a volume?
 
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lightsaber
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 8:27 pm

FiscAutTecGarte wrote:

Does anyone have any idea just how much money they are losing on each A220-300 produced? Is it just almost unsurmountable? Is it material choices? Totally inefficient building methods? High labor costs? Too low of a volume?

Airbus is working to cut costs by 20%
https://montrealgazette.com/business/ai ... cost-cuts/
Airbus is working to slash supplier costs associated with its Quebec-designed A220 program by one-fifth over the next two years — though much remains to be done, its top executive said.

https://leehamnews.com/2021/09/28/airbu ... cut-costs/
At the current low-rate production of about 5/mo, Airbus loses about $400m a year on the program, according to a London financial analyst who follows Airbus. (Massou declined to confirm this figure.)

Massou decline to reveal how long it takes Airbus to assemble an A220. LNA estimates it takes about 14 days. A 50% reduction, to about seven days, is in line with Boeing’s time to assemble a 737, pre-COVID, pre-grounding of the MAX.


Some costs are fixed. In other words, increasing production doesn't raise program costs and thus lowers unit costs.

A big part is the stuffing of barrels. Doing that on the main assembly line is just not how Airbus does it. I'm a fan of parallel production as much as possible. When you have multiple barrels, you have more access points. When you are down to a few doors, bring people and material in and out is too slow. That doubles the assembly time. There will be more automation, I'm certain.

Part of the problem is speculated to be high component costs that Airbus is negotiating down.

https://travelandaviation.com/spirit-ae ... ears-news/
Spirit produced just 43 A220 “shipsets” in 2020, up slightly from 40 in 2019.

“Rates are still quite low on the A220 programme,” says Gentile. “As we see the market recover and air traffic resume, we expect to see [A220] rates get back to where they were projected to be previously, and that will also improve the profitability of the programme.”

“If we can see those production rates climb [to] 100, 125, 130 – we can be profitable,” Suchinski adds.


My personal experience is if you double production, costs drop about 1/8th. So Airbus is doing a mix of:
1. Vendor price reduction
2. Efficiency of process (its more than stuffing barrels, but by getting inefficient work out of the way, other work will be lower cost)
3. Economics of scale (produce more and each unit is less)
4. I assume more automation (but I have nothing but a hunch on that)

Lightsaber

PS, I see a market for the A220-500 due to efficiency. I'm not a fan of the A320.5 concept. Airbus should prioritize production on the A321NEO flavors that will be far more profitable. But to make any A220 a viable product, unit cost of production must drop for the A220 significantly. There is a plan for current production. I believe the A220 subsystems warrant a switch for airlines where the A320CEO's range was adequate.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 9:46 pm

lightsaber wrote:
Airbus is working to cut costs by 20%
https://montrealgazette.com/business/ai ... cost-cuts/
Airbus is working to slash supplier costs associated with its Quebec-designed A220 program by one-fifth over the next two years — though much remains to be done, its top executive said.


That's a poorly-written article. Cutting supplier costs 20% doesn't cut total costs by 20%.

FiscAutTecGarte wrote:
Does anyone have any idea just how much money they are losing on each A220-300 produced? Is it just almost unsurmountable? Is it material choices? Totally inefficient building methods? High labor costs? Too low of a volume?


That's a good question. Back in February '21, an exec was quoted as saying the A220 program made no contribution margin. (Or worse - none could mean negative, meaning the more A220s they make, the more they lose). No contribution margin means no contribution to manufacturing overhead, engineering overhead, SG&A, nor interest costs. Higher production volume can improve labor productivity (if tooling is underutilized) but the scale of possible improvements depends on what fraction of total cost is direct labor. I don't recall any references to that.

Of course, contribution margin is also a function of avg sales price of units currently delivered. I don't think there's much reliable data in public on that.
 
Weatherwatcher1
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 10:04 pm

Are enough of the engineers who designed the original CSeries still working at the old Bombardier engineering offices to legitimately design a stretched airplane? I was under the impression that there was a giant brain drain during the various rounds of layoffs in Montreal.
 
WkndWanderer
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Fri Oct 01, 2021 10:16 pm

keesje wrote:

Also e.g. UA, DL, AA and many others skipped A320NEO's.. it would be interesting to compare the numbers of A320NEO ordered / converted against the A321NEO over the last 4 years. Scherer isn't blind but says what fits the current status.


UA and AA have plenty of MAX8’s ordered in that size space though and Delta doesn’t seem to have a good replacement in the pipeline for A320’s and 738’s unless they’re just going to have a big gap between an A220-300 and the 739/A321 at some point. I think the idea of a stretched A220 replacing the A320 becomes more attractive if the A320 family’s sales get squeezed more toward the larger A321 end and A320/738 operators choose MAX8’s or A220-300’s to replace them.
 
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ADent
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:40 am

I saw an article ( https://aviationweek.com/aerospace/airc ... y-recovery ) where they said the program is limited by the original long term contracts, but "One insider says the potential A220-500, a stretched version of the -300 already on the drawing boards, could provide Airbus with an elegant solution to take more work in-house in the long term."

So there is thinking that an A220-500 may allow Airbus freedom to make changes that could help the program .
 
TaromA380
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 9:05 am

Imagine how easy things would become if A22X would ever gain cockpit commonality with A32X...
 
Noshow
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 9:28 am

Not going to happen.
 
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Thunderboltdrgn
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 9:37 am

How long would the A220-500 be and would that cause any problems?
The - 300 is already a meter longer than the A320neo.
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 9:52 am

Wasn't the 300 the standard design and the 100 a shrink. If so a 500 should be fine and competitive . Guessing it would appeal to legacy carriers with large fleets so it wouldn't matter too much if having 220 fleet and a 321 fleet . Or even 320 and 220 if similar pax could be easily subbed for each other
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 10:11 am

Weatherwatcher1 wrote:
Are enough of the engineers who designed the original CSeries still working at the old Bombardier engineering offices to legitimately design a stretched airplane? I was under the impression that there was a giant brain drain during the various rounds of layoffs in Montreal.


Don't think this will be a major obstacle. As long as everything is properly documented, you don't need the original design engineers. It helps if you have them of course, but Airbus has enough knowledge in house to do it themselves.

Thunderboltdrgn wrote:
How long would the A220-500 be and would that cause any problems?
The - 300 is already a meter longer than the A320neo.


The -100 is 35 metres, the -300 is 39 metres, so a -500 would probably be 43-44 metres if I'm simply extrapolating without any engineering knowledge :silly:
It would be close to the A321 length (45 metres), but still shorter than the also 5 abreast MD-88 (45 metres) and MD-90-30 (46 metres). According to Wiki, there also was a proposed MD-90-40, which would be 52 metres long :wideeyed: - almost as long as the 757-300 (54 metres) :faint:
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 12:51 pm

Current A220-series production costs are a symptom of problems and opportunities that Airbus appears to have gripped strongly - they are probably a large part of the reason Airbus was able to purchase the C series so cheaply in the first place.

Airbus is focussed on A220 financial performance over its production and aftermarket lifecycles - as it should be - not on current production costs in a narrow sense.
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 1:28 pm

TaromA380 wrote:
Imagine how easy things would become if A22X would ever gain cockpit commonality with A32X...

This seems to be an obsession within a.net...
 
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Taxi645
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 1:50 pm

JerseyFlyer wrote:
Current A220-series production costs are a symptom of problems and opportunities that Airbus appears to have gripped strongly - they are probably a large part of the reason Airbus was able to purchase the C series so cheaply in the first place.

Airbus is focussed on A220 financial performance over its production and aftermarket lifecycles - as it should be - not on current production costs in a narrow sense.


Now now, not so much common sense. ;)
 
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DL717
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 1:52 pm

When they first started the program at Bombardier, they showed multiple cabin configurations which perfectly covered the 736/A318 and 737/A319. It would not surprise me at all given all the years of talk about a CS500/A225 of there was already some work done on what would now be a -500. This was never a regional aircraft from Bombardier. It was their attempt to enter the narrowbody market in a meaningful way. Some of the original LOPAs showed 16/80 and 16/100 where the A225 would likely seat 16/120

If Airbus does the A225, it would create a rather interesting scenario by eating the A320. The A220 is a damn fine AC and eating the A320 my be just fine at this point. It’s not really selling anymore. Going to the A225 opens the door for Airbus to go after the middle market with a A321/A321+ replacement in the vein of the 757-200/300. Maybe that’s a better position to begin with. It would be a decade for it to come to market and if they offered the comfort level of the A220 in six across with a wider middle seat, they’d have quite the winner. Slap a 130-140’ span wing on it and you’ve quickly replaced the 757 in a way that leaves Boeing still circling about what it should do for the middle market. Airbus needs a product between the A320 and the A350. So does the market. Contrary to the “A321 replaces the 757” crowd, there is a massive 200-240 seat gap (single class) that exists today where a widebody is not the appropriate aircraft for domestic service (short or medium haul). This is a way through to that future.

The Neo will be 15 years in by the time the Airbus MOM enters service. Timing now is damn near perfect. A225 would hit the market in about 5-years (maybe less of work has already been done). A319/320 would ride off into the sunset by about 2035 in terms of production with a dwindling backlog. A220 investment would be a massive win to get the smaller narrowbody market for next to nothing.

Yes, Boeing will launch their MOM. So be it. The timing will be no different than the 787/A350 timing. I’m a huge Boeing fan, but the 350 is a better positioned plane in terms of size when you look at what needs to go between the current widebody and narrowbody market. Airbus will end with the better position than Boeing who still has to address the 737 replacement after the MOM in 15-20 years where Airbus will not. If done right, Airbus could find itself with 3 aircraft to fill the 200-240 seat gap which would be outstanding seating 16/160, 16/180 and 16/200 or 200, 220 and 240 single class, plus the A220.
Last edited by DL717 on Sat Oct 02, 2021 2:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 2:40 pm

Revelation wrote:
FluidFlow wrote:
planecane wrote:
Why would Airbus want to do that? They can make more money on the A320NEO than an A220 and it has a mature, high rate production process. They'd be mostly competing with themselves since I doubt there would be many orders that they would beat the 737MAX with the A220 that they couldn't have won with the A320NEO. Is AF/KLM going to switch to the 737MAX if Airbus doesn't stretch the A220? I highly doubt it.


If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.

If it were this simple then Airbus would be committing to it now, rather than not making a commitment and suggesting perhaps five years from now.

Instead what we see Airbus doing is investing in more A32x capacity in TLS and waiting/hoping for A22x to stand on its own financially.

This is classic carrot/stick behavior.

There's a lot more at play here than meets the eye.


Indeed, not least of which is the billions that Airbus would have to spend to bring the A225 to market. Something the fantasy brigade simply ignore.
 
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scbriml
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 2:44 pm

keesje wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Seems to me there's no actual news in this new thread, but the pretty pictures are always welcome.


Whereas Airbus Chief Commercial Aircraft, Christian Scherer, said last June that the airframer has no plans to offer more versions of the A220, he said now that it will be a matter of time when the airframer will offer a stretched A220.


https://airinsight.com/a220-opens-a-new ... ir-france/

Airbus even mentions 2025, a lenght. A significant changed message. KLM and AF have been passing on NEO's and MAX's for a decade. No doubt they'll order a load of A321NEO's. But that isn't the end of the story.

Also e.g. UA, DL, AA and many others skipped A320NEO's.. it would be interesting to compare the numbers of A320NEO ordered / converted against the A321NEO over the last 4 years. Scherer isn't blind but says what fits the current status.


I don’t think that article says the things you think it does. :shakehead:
 
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CarlosSi
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 2:55 pm

That didn’t stop Boeing from developing the 737-900 which arguably contributed to the 757’s downfall ;) . (Can’t have a thread without it mentioned).

The a320 neo is different obviously; it has thousands of orders. Is there long-term net-net profit from making an a220-500?

I feel like it would be niche for airlines that want something bigger but don’t want a second type. Few airlines are sole a220 at this point.

Actually scratch that I feel like airlines could have whole fleets of the a220-500.
 
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FiscAutTecGarte
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 3:13 pm

I don't think the A220-500 is a replacement for the 737-800.... The 8MAX is the replacement for the 737-800. THe A320 is significantly smaller than the 738, therefore A220-500 would be aimed right at the 700, 7MAX and A319, A320.
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 3:25 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
Airbus is working to cut costs by 20%
https://montrealgazette.com/business/ai ... cost-cuts/
Airbus is working to slash supplier costs associated with its Quebec-designed A220 program by one-fifth over the next two years — though much remains to be done, its top executive said.


That's a poorly-written article. Cutting supplier costs 20% doesn't cut total costs by 20%.


I also provided other links on other changes Airbus is doing to get the overall costs down that 20% per unit.

lightsaber wrote:
My personal experience is if you double production, costs drop about 1/8th. So Airbus is doing a mix of:
1. Vendor price reduction
2. Efficiency of process (its more than stuffing barrels, but by getting inefficient work out of the way, other work will be lower cost)
3. Economics of scale (produce more and each unit is less)
4. I assume more automation (but I have nothing but a hunch on that)



The most important will be increasing the economics of scale. 2nd most important is process improvements to get from the 14 days to 7. 3rd is vendor price cuts.

That means Airbus needs to increase the desirability of the product as unless they sell more, they cannot increase the rate. Prior links in this thread indicate Airbus has done most of the design work (it really isn't that hard). However, the big expense will be the flight testing and structural testing (to prove the new barrel lengths meet cycles/hours). I did a "back of the envelope" spreadsheet and I find there is a business case for the A220-500, if production goes higher than the currently announced maximums (with more automation and expansion at Mirabel, that should be plausible).

I'm ignoring the A320 as I think there is so much demand for the A321, the concern is the most economical increase in production (best business case).

You do not do one thing to cut costs. Funny, I'm currently working a project where my employer is the prime, with Airbus, to cut manufacturing costs and we are constantly using inovations in the A220 and A320 to look for ways to dramatically lower cost structure. e.g., one of the big ways Airbus cuts costs is "smart tools" on the Hamburg line of the A320 (not just automation) That eliminates the QA inspector. :wideeyed: Because the tool takes a photo of the work, knows where the tool is being used, the server was programed to look for the bolt, washer, and torque, and the tool just does the job. I don't know if Mirabel and Mobile have Smart tools, but I would add:

5. Smart tools with automatic photo checking to ensure part assembly.
6. Automated alignment checking (ensure build up is as plan), another Airbus tech. I have no link, they just gave me a custom factory tour where their chief engineers had to be pulled out to answer my questions (and I think I scared them as suddenly all of my company's staff shut up to let me lead the questions for 90 minutes and I had, politely phrased, shall we say detailed questions they don't expect sales tours to ask as few in aerospace have experience in analysis, design, test, alignments, software, imaging, production variation, and design for production).

Airbus put a supply chain manager in charge of the A220 for a reason (See link below). That gives me the opinion the #1 thing Airbus wants for the next 3 years is A220 cost reduction. Unfortunately, as much as I like the idea of an A220-500, as much as I see a business case, cash flow is also a key criteria.

https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/airbus- ... 21-05-10-0

I would also add:
7. 3D print more parts (3D printing has come a long way since A220 design, heck, I'm getting insight from my vendors on A350 part redesign for 3D printing).

So my expectation is a few years of focus on cost cutting, PiPs, reliability, and then implement the A220-500.
But that leaves A220 sales.

Lightsaber
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 3:51 pm

ScottB wrote:
FluidFlow wrote:
If Airbus makes 0 profit on the 225, 5 million on the 320 and 10million on the 321, selling 1x 225 and 2x 321 makes 20million while selling 1x320 and 1x321 only makes 15million profit.

So as long as the backlog of 321 is large and production capacity the bottle neck it makes sense to start pushing towars a 225/321 production.


Investors care far less about gross profit than they do about margin, and in the scenario you propose, just selling the A320 and A321 will produce higher margin than selling three aircraft. Further, it ignores more rational commercial decisions on the part of Airbus to either eschew the A320 sale and sell two A321s (since the demand is there and overall profit/margin would be higher) or to expand A320 manufacturing capacity in order to capture that additional sale in the A320/A225 segment.

It only makes sense to use the A225 to address the segment occupied by A320neo if Airbus can achieve similar margins for the A225 or there's some logistical reason why they cannot expand A320 production to meet that demand (and I cannot imagine what that might be given they have successfully expanded assembly to several sites globally).


But that's assuming there are no other external factor that would force them to develop A220-500.

Like it or not, MAX8 provide significant challenge for A320neo.It could carry 3 rows more seat and it have slightly better performance and fuel burn compared to A320neo. And while the other MAX variants didn't sell as well as the MAX8. The MAX8 is still an aircraft that really give the MAX program a lifeline. Preventing the MAX8 from getting more sales would dent Boeing influence in the narrowbody market.
This would push Boeing to design a replacement for their B737 line. And Airbus could sit back and enjoy A220-500 and A321neo while waiting for their hydrogen program in 2030. While Boeing have to pour 20-30 billions into developing new narrowbody.

Also, if A220-500 became popular, it would boost the A220 program as a whole. This would give Airbus a solid reason to finally pour significant money into the program to solidify it's place within the Airbus production line. Without 1000 extra order for A220-500. The current A220 program would stay stagnate.
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 4:23 pm

FLALEFTY wrote:
AF/KLM Group has 44 A320's & 116 B738's in their inventories. The A320's are configured with 174 seats in a single class. The B738's are configured with 189 seats in a single class. The average age of the A320 fleet 12.1 years and the B738 fleet is 11.7 years.

https://www.planespotters.net/airline/Air-France-KLM

To replace both mid-sized types would require a significant stretch of the A223 to accommodate the missions flown by these legacy types. An uprated engine would be required, landing gear would have to be modified and a fair amount of wind tunnel time would be needed to work out the aerodynamic tweaks. None of this is in the "too-hard pile", but it will take time and money. If they started now (highly unlikely) I imagine they might be able to deliver sometime in 2026, or 2027. All this in an attempt to replace the well-established A320NEO's that do the same missions and are in production.

One of the reasons that Airbus took over the (troubled) BCS program was to tap into the program's design work, especially in the heavy use of composite structures. The longer-term plan was for Airbus to use this engineering knowledge to help in designing the ultimate replacement for the A32X series. I would think that Airbus might be looking to start such a program in the next couple of years?


You are right the current A320 and 737 in service at KLM-AF have some years to go. But this isn't about just this airline, globally there are thousands of 737NG and A320CEO's to be replaced.

If we take a conservative approach on a A220-500 (same MTOW as A220-300HGW, same engines etc) Airbus would mainly be trading range for capacity. I think for most mainline / LCC carriers, this isn't to much of an issue, few flights are longer than 3 hours. There are many 737 and A320 family aircraft around to fill in the >4 hrs 180+ seat network requirements.

The biggest reason for airlines to want such a stretched A220 would be: lower operating costs.
:arrow: A significantly lighter aircraft, lower thrust engines and fuel consumption, for the same capability.
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keesje
 
 
majano
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:03 pm

For all the praise the A220 gets, and the C-Series used to get around here, one would expect it to be doing much better than it is. Under Bombardier it barely gained market traction. It has gained some orders at Airbus, but the production costs are said to be too high and the rate slow.

Having this as a problem, you have Ben Smith making repeated demands about a stretch which would suit the unique set of needs at the airline group he leads. Adding a third variant before achieving unit profitability will only shift such to the right. Not that my opinion counts for much, but I am unconvinced. Wasn't the C-Series said by some to be one of the best airplanes ever designed?!
 
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Revelation
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:05 pm

tinpusher007 wrote:

Nothing new here. They want to be at 6/month early in 2022 and 14/month in 2025. The pre-FAL building where they are doing the stuffing was announced in 2019 ( ref: https://www.wingsoverquebec.com/?p=9012 ). As Lightsaber says above, this is standard Airbus practice.

Simple Flying largely ripped off a Leeham article ( https://leehamnews.com/2021/09/28/airbu ... cut-costs/ ) which says:

An early Airbus challenge is to bring the cost down, dramatically. At the current low-rate production of about 5/mo, Airbus loses about $400m a year on the program, according to a London financial analyst who follows Airbus. (Massou declined to confirm this figure.)

Massou decline to reveal how long it takes Airbus to assemble an A220. LNA estimates it takes about 14 days. A 50% reduction, to about seven days, is in line with Boeing’s time to assemble a 737, pre-COVID, pre-grounding of the MAX.

So Airbus is estimated to be losing $400m/year now which is in line with the "no revenue contribution" comments earlier in this thread.
 
vnauta
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:09 pm

Would this follow the same path as the A321 did? In the beginning the 321 wasn't to popular but after some updates it became more and more attractive to airlines.
 
ewt340
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sun Oct 03, 2021 4:58 am

Some comparison to seating capacity amongst narrowbody in the market right now. This comparison based on speculation that Airbus would stretch A220-500 by adding 8 extra frames into the fuselage which resulted in 168" in cabin space for A220-500.

Image
 
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sun Oct 03, 2021 6:21 am

777Mech wrote:
A 180 seat A225?? Paging DL....

Delta puts 180 seats on their 737-900s. I don't think an A220-500 would quite cut it. Their A220-100s have 109 seats and -300s have 130. The stretch being talked about here would make room for maybe 160 seats, but 180? Not a chance.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:47 am

747-600X wrote:
777Mech wrote:
A 180 seat A225?? Paging DL....

Delta puts 180 seats on their 737-900s. I don't think an A220-500 would quite cut it. Their A220-100s have 109 seats and -300s have 130. The stretch being talked about here would make room for maybe 160 seats, but 180? Not a chance.


You are correct. If you take the "official", published capacity and range figures seriously, you're entering a marketing reality not matching what we see in operation. Scherer does so.

I looked at existing single class cabin dimensions and layouts for capacity and for payload-range figures with that passenger payload at 100kg per passenger to determine comparable ranges.

E.g. Ryanair removes galleys, toilets, cabin dividers and puts in seats right until the doors. Generalizing that works for theoretical capacity advantages, CASM comparisons, but does't reflect operational realities. A 737-800 in reality has two more meters, seat rows than a A320. Stating it is more, seems "creative".
 
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seahawk
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sun Oct 03, 2021 10:24 am

Every NEO sold makes money, no A220 sold makes money. The 225 only makes sense if the A320 line is clocked up with A321 or/and A322.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus pushed for A220-500, replacing A320CEO / 737-800.. ?

Sun Oct 03, 2021 11:31 am

seahawk wrote:
Every NEO sold makes money, no A220 sold makes money. The 225 only makes sense if the A320 line is clocked up with A321 or/and A322.


I think this short term realism made the biggest OE in the world the second biggest. If a manufacturer concludes, based on sales, marketshare, margin and competitive developments they need to act, add 7-8 years in terms of development, certification and ramp-up of the solution.. -> No vision no glory.

The question seems to be if a 5-6 t lower empty weight of a A220-500 compared to A320/738 would really make that much of a difference for bigger airlines replacing previous generation NB's. I think yes, a big impact.
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