United Airline, your posts are full of hearsay and opinions that really have very little logical basis which you then classify and assert almost as fact.
Do you know how much a new wing costs? Do you know what price Boeing will have to offer the B747A at in order to meet those costs? Right now, the B747A is about as realistic as a paper plane I make up now. Just having a new B787 cockpit and having FBW doesn't decrease seat-mile costs by enough to make the plane worth getting.
If the B747A is launched, nope, I can't see QF
ordering it, not when they've put out an RFP for the B777-300ER or the A340-600/-600HGW. They have 6 B743's and 8 x 2 class B744's that I would say would need replacing. The 2 class 744's are in a 66J/366Y configuration, which works occasionally, but if they ran a 2 class operation, it would likely be more economical to run the A346 or the B773ER in off-peak season when fewer economy seats are filled. I think QF
need that smaller aircraft in order to open longer, thinner routes with reasonably high yields. The B744 is just too much aircraft for that type of route. And with QF
putting A380's into service on the routes that have high F and J class demand (LHR
etc.), then the B744 becomes a little superfluous once the 744 has reached end of its useful life.
has 14x B747's it wants to eventually replace, and in the long term it will have to look for a 763 replacement. The question then becomes more interesting. Boeing, if it has any sense at all will pitch the B773ER *with* the smaller B787. Airbus may go the other way and offer attractive deals on more A380's and more A330's (or A350) if they go with the A340-600/-600HGW. I say the A346HGW because by the time QF
want them, the -600HGW will have come out and been operational with EK
But leaves us with an interesting question. Does QF
go with the B773ER (which is a truer B744 replacement than the A346 in terms of pax capacity - both planes trounce B744 in the cargo department) and the B787 with a view to replacing their B763's as well? Or does QF
go with the A346/A346HGW and more A333's (or A350's - A333's more likely because available in the short-term) in order to expand in the international sector?
Boeing pros and cons:
Pros - perceived technological advances in the B787, B773ER more of a true replacement for the B743 and B744 than the A346/346HGW. Alleged promises of better fuel economy in the B787.
Cons - 2 new fleet types. Although this will be less of a factor when the 763 is retired, there's plenty of life in the 763's yet.
Airbus pros and cons:
Pros - commonality with current A330-200/-300 and A380-800's in fleet (333's were delayed in order to share exactly common cockpit with A380). Likelihood of better financial terms.
Cons - Will see reduction in capacity on an aircraft-by-aircraft comparison against the B773ER. A350 is long way off. A330 too big for Australian domestic runs (trans-cons excepted)
Dixon's statements recently about QF
having to be less Australian is interesting. Will he abandon everything in Australia (except the main business corridors like SYD
) to Jetstar? If this is the case, then the Airbus case is a bit stronger.
It's a tough one either way. I find the introduction of another fleet type could be a bit too expensive and I think QF
may feel the same way. Expect Airbus to put a really good deal to QF
and Dixon the number cruncher will take it. As good as the B773ER and B787 could and should be, the Airbus combo of the A330-300/A340-600HGW/A380-800 is probably a bit too powerful.
I think QF
will eventually order 12 x A340-600HGW (reduced capacity on this class of aircraft will be taken over by the A380), 4 x A330-300's (for regional expansion and extra frequency) and maybe 2 more A380's (good deal). Some of these may be options. The numbers of planes I see is of course pure speculation but having thought about it, it seems to make a lot of sense. Some will disagree of course and I'd like to see where you do