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Halibut
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Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 8:53 pm

Looks like Airbus is in a Dammed if you do Dammed if you don't situation !

I am coming to the conclusion that Airbus , regardless what they do , are now years behind Boeing in the widebody market .

Halibut



http://www.usatoday.com/money/indust...cturing/2006-04-16-a350-usat_x.htm


Airbus considers redesign of jetliner


By Dan Reed, USA TODAY
Criticism from customers has pushed Airbus to consider redesigning its planned A-350, the jetliner the European planemaker is counting on to compete directly with Boeing's ground-breaking, hot-selling 787 Dreamliner.

A costly redesign ~{!*~} which would be the fifth ~{!*~} could spell big trouble for Airbus, delaying the plane until 2012, four years after the expected availability of the Boeing plane.

Not an easy decision

Still, the decision to invest an additional $3 billion to $5 billion in redesigning the A-350 is not an automatic one for executives at Airbus and its corporate parent, EADS.

To invest in an A-350 redesign, Airbus may have to depend on government-backed loans, which likely would draw a legal challenge from Boeing and the United States at the World Trade Organization.

Airbus and EADS are facing other big cash drains. BAE, the longtime British partner in Airbus, last week said it wants to sell its 20% stake in the planemaker, worth up to $5 billion, back to EADS, which owns the other 80%.

[Edited 2006-04-17 13:56:05]
 
lehpron
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:26 pm

A380: self-gain
A350: self-loss
A340: old news
A320: bread and butter

:D
 
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Stitch
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:47 pm

Since we keep asking the same question in a new post everytime the press comments on the issue, I'll just reply with the "condensed version":

The A350 is what it is. It's what Airbus has to offer and while it may not record as many sales as the 787 does, it's not going to mark the end of Airbus as a manufacturer of widebody aircraft, much less aircraft, period.
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:50 pm

Look, this is a readjustment period for Airbus. But all this talk about redesigning the A350 is just not going to happen. They will play with second best and discount deeply to compete. I imagine to see some tweaks in the program but its current definition is most likely the reincarnation we will see...

IMO, they will keep the A350 as it is now, which is still a great A330 derivative and a great upgrade for the current Airbus operators... They will compete by discounting... Boeing will retain the 767 customers with the 787 offerings. Airbus could easily recoup their A350 investment by going this route.

Eventually, when the A340 orders start to dry up and it will... I bet sooner rather than later, you will see Airbus coming out with a clean sheet design of a new long haul twin, maybe as the A360... I am sure with a lot of borrowed A350 specs.

So its not all doom and gloom for Airbus... just will take a little longer... Boeing will be on top for the next 10 years or so..
 
kaneporta1
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:54 pm

I think Airbus should do what they did with the 330 and 340, develop 2 planes together. Keep the A350 as it is and try and get as much of the market as possible (around 30% or so) and develop a 'new' A360 in parallel, 2-3 years behind the 350, with the 350 wing, a new fuselage and engines, to compete at the 300-400 pax market.
 
slz396
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:56 pm

It is good to have people post links to news event from the aviation industry from all over the world, but is it really necessary to have a new topic about the A350 and the possible (re)design almost EVERY single day? Besides, I can't say this article brings anything new: it merely sums up the 2 possibilities and the pro's and con's which have been mentioned in at least 10 other topics over the past few weeks....

I know it is easter, but still there have been some more interesting NEW things published lately: LY and the A330, the 737 assembly problems, ... (not limited to these BTW)
 
Rj111
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:06 pm

That sounds hideously expensive though Kaneporta1. The thing about the A330 and A342/3, is they basically are the same planes.

If an A360 was only 2-3 years time behind, the A350 would be pointless. It would be obselete almost immediately.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:21 pm

Its taken 15 years for Boeing to front a 767 replacement in the face of a better competitor in the A330, so the A350 design is unlikely to be make or break in the face of the 787. Airbus will get some of the market with the current design, so they arent in a dire situation.
 
Lumberton
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:32 pm

I asked this on another thread, but never got an answer. Even if Airbus were to design a new aircraft to compete with the 787 would it offer significantly better performance? Wouldn't there be a rough parity, i.e., composite fuselage, same engines, etc.? How much wider could you make the fuselage w/o drag being a significant factor?

IMO, the A350 will compete nicely and will win its share of orders. Airbus is advertising very favorable performance data and will be prepared to back this up with their money. Personally, I don't see the advantage of a completely re-designed A350. It'll infuriate customers who have already ordered the aircraft by pushing the EIS to the right, the bad press will be scorching, and it'll give Boeing a free reign in a very profitable market segment for a few more years.
 
astuteman
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:44 pm

Quoting Kaneporta1 (Reply 4):
I think Airbus should do what they did with the 330 and 340, develop 2 planes together.

The more I think about this, the more I agree, but not quite as you have suggested.

Ideally I'd like to see Airbus develop a 10 abreast twin "A340", plus a competitive A350, but I don't see them as in a position to do both.

For me a next best option would be to develop a new A350 X-section, say, 12" or so wider than the current cross-section. By keeping the keel-to-deck height the same as it is now, they could move the widest point upwards in the cabin, and (even with a circular cross-section at this size,) have about 6" or so more space from deck to headrest height than the 787, giving comfortable 9-abreast seating.

I believe that would answer most customers criticisms of the A350.

That cross-section could then be applied to the A345/6E programme, together with the newer/lighter A350 type materials and (dare I say it) 4 x Trent 1500's of 10%+ better SFC (if Lightsaber's rumours are anywhere near), producing a far better A345/6E than is being considered today.

Yes, it's still a quad, but it would mean a common cross-section again, and, for the same level of investment in the A345/6E as is currently being considered, produce a much better aircraft.

Not ideal, perhaps, but could well be a workable medium term solution.
A
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:59 pm

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 7):
they arent in a dire situation

Richard I agree. But I think they some important challenges ahead:

Airbus has to complete the A380.
Airbus has to complete the A400.
Airbus has to make the A350 more competitive.
Airbus has to find the billions to pay BAE for its share, and billions more for the A350.

Let's hope for Airbus sake, that Boeing doesnt launch the 737 replacement in the next 10 years. This would add even more complexity for Airbus.

I think if there is an issue with Airbus it will be finding the cash to do it... I don't think government loans is an option for Airbus. I think they will go for private debt to pay for these investments.
 
trex8
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:12 pm

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 10):
Airbus has to complete the A380.
Airbus has to complete the A400.
Airbus has to make the A350 more competitive.
Airbus has to find the billions to pay BAE for its share, and billions more for the A350

I thought the A400 is a military project, so why does Airbus have to come up with the money??Haven't the various governments of the main customers come up with the euros?
EADS has to find money to pay BAe, not Airbus itself. Ok so Airbus is mostly EADS but its not strictly coming out of Airbus's coffers. That also assumes, EADS will be the buyer for all of it , which is likely but not definite.
 
zvezda
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:16 pm

I'm amazed that so many here think the right answer is clear. If it were clear, Airbus executives would not be fighting over it. This is a difficult decision.

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 8):
Even if Airbus were to design a new aircraft to compete with the 787 would it offer significantly better performance? Wouldn't there be a rough parity, i.e., composite fuselage, same engines, etc.?

A clean-sheet A350 would use the same engines as the B787 and probably the same generation of composite technology. However, Airbus would have an advantage in aerodynamics.

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 8):
How much wider could you make the fuselage w/o drag being a significant factor?

Parasitic drag of the fuselage is proportional to the cross sectional area, given a constant coefficient of drag. In the real world, decreasing the length to width ratio of the fuselage would slightly lower the coefficient of drag, so the increase in parasitic drag of the fuselage would be slightly less than proportional with the increase in cross sectional area. Anyway, the induced drag would be unchanged, of course, so the increase in total drag would be much less than proportional with the increase in cross sectional area.
 
deltadc9
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:22 pm

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 7):
Its taken 15 years for Boeing to front a 767 replacement in the face of a better competitor in the A330, so the A350 design is unlikely to be make or break in the face of the 787. Airbus will get some of the market with the current design, so they arent in a dire situation.

Exactly, just like it was not a mistake for Chrysler to upgrade the Dodge pickup. It is better in some ways that its higher selling competitors, but has little chance of overtaking them. They are a making very good profit, gaining market share, and have no shot at being number 1 or 2. So what? They sold 600,000 Dodge Pickups last year, thats many many times over the pre 94 models. They also improved their customer image by producing a better product than before, helping sales of other product lines.

The argument that "we cant overtake Chevy and Ford" holds no water here, so why should "we cant beat the 787" be that that big a deal for Airbus. SOMEBODY has to be second or third in sales, as long as you make an aceptable profit its all good. The goal of being number 1 should not cast a negative light on doing good business selling an excellent second best selling product.
 
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N328KF
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:29 pm

Quoting DeltaDC9 (Reply 13):
The argument that "we cant overtake Chevy and Ford" holds no water here, so why should "we cant beat the 787" be that that big a deal for Airbus. SOMEBODY has to be second or third in sales, as long as you make an aceptable profit its all good. The goal of being number 1 should not cast a negative light on doing good business selling an excellent second best selling product.

To add to that (take it in what ever way you please), General Electric under Welch had statement that if they weren't #1 or #2 in a product category, they didn't bother playing in it.
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:36 pm

Quoting Trex8 (Reply 11):

I thought the A400 is a military project, so why does Airbus have to come up with the money??

Because its owned by EADS as it's all one big happy family, Airbus is just the name of their commercial airplane division.

The EU may offer some money but there is still risk and R&D that is absorbed by EADS and only recouped if they sell.
 
parapente
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:42 pm

All this fuss is about one thing- 9 abreast seating.Boeing did not launch the 787 as 9 abreast.All their figures were based on (a roomier) 8 abreast.Why do airlines want a cramped (737 style) seating?
If they did not fill it up they would be flying "air" with "deep Thrombsis" pasengers.No they are asking for more capacity! Boeing has had to move rapidly from the Dash 8 to the Dash9 ,to the Dask9HGW,and then forced to bring forward a New dash 10.Their first attempt was to trade range for more Pax-even that was turned down!
There are no 787 engines even capable of producing the thrust required to power a 787-10 9,000 miles!
The airlines are asking for a bigger plane full stop.
The A350-900 has given them a headache.Now for the full megraine.The A450-1000. a 350 seater powered by 90,000 lbs thrust A380 engines! Boeing will have no response as the 777 is heavier than the A350.This is what Emirates is discussing I believe-a sister ship to the A380. Just as the 767 was to the 747.
Airbus "may" revamp the A340-but it may just cede the 390-450 seat market to boeing but operate just below and above this segment.Thats my oppinion
 
Joni
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:46 pm

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 10):

Let's hope for Airbus sake, that Boeing doesnt launch the 737 replacement in the next 10 years. This would add even more complexity for Airbus.

I recall reading in AW&ST that Airbus and Boeing had done internal analyses of how much performance they'd gain by completely redesigning the 737NG / A320, and the result was only around 4% or so, without new-generation engines.

It's not worth the money to make a new fuselage out of composited or new Al-Li and redo the wing etc to gain only that much. So it's pretty unlikely that we'll see new-gen narrowbodies until such engines come along.
 
zvezda
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:00 am

Quoting Joni (Reply 17):
I recall reading in AW&ST that Airbus and Boeing had done internal analyses of how much performance they'd gain by completely redesigning the 737NG / A320, and the result was only around 4% or so, without new-generation engines.

Right, the gain from composites is larger in larger fuselages. A small structure might gain a 10% advantage from using CFRP over metal while a large structure might gain a 30% advantage. In the single-aisle size, I think the benefit of aerodynamic advances since the A320 might exceed the benefit of a composite fuselage.
 
NAV20
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:00 am

Quoting Trex8 (Reply 11):
EADS has to find money to pay BAe, not Airbus itself. Ok so Airbus is mostly EADS but its not strictly coming out of Airbus's coffers. That also assumes, EADS will be the buyer for all of it , which is likely but not definite.

With respect, Trex8, it IS definite. BAE has the benefit of a 'put option' which it can exercise at any time; and EADS will have to pay up at the valuation of BAE's interest at the time of exercise.

I think the magic phrase is 'cash flow'. EADS could probably afford any three of the options of buying out BAE, completing the A380, designing the A380F, designing the A400, designing the A350, up-grading the A340, producing a clean-sheet design for a competitive 300-seater, 'clean-sheeting' a 350-plus seater, or producing a successor to the A320.

However, I don't readily see how they can afford to pursue ALL those options at once; particularly since the BAE option has been forced upon them. My guess is that which two of the eight options listed (taking the BAE buyout as read) they should concentrate on through 2006/7 is very much the question that is occupying the minds of the EADS top brass at this time.
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:05 am

Quoting Joni (Reply 17):
So it's pretty unlikely that we'll see new-gen narrowbodies until such engines come along.

I think it WILL happen in the next 5 years. Look the engine manufactures and aerospace giants are making a killing on all the 767/A300/A310/A340 replacements with the 787 and A350. These frames being replaced would otherwise continue to fly if it were not for the high fuel prices.

So we will see the same for the A320/737... I'm willing to bet engines manufacters will start to solidify new engine programs and developments within the next 5-10 years to accompany a new airframe development. Pratt is counting on this. This is guaranteed... My question is, can Airbus prepare for this? They need a lot of capital in the next 10 years to support growth and new R&D. This is a very expensive business to be in.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:18 am

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 19):
With respect, Trex8, it IS definite. BAE has the benefit of a 'put option' which it can exercise at any time; and EADS will have to pay up at the valuation of BAE's interest at the time of exercise.

EADS dont have to buy BAEs shares, the options give them a first refusal but it would be beneficial for them to buy them over an unknown third party.

I also dont see the A380 being a huge drain on Airbus at the moment, the development funding today is probably next to nothing over what it was 3 years ago, and they have money coming in from it from the end of this year (hopefully) so the current flow they are looking at is more short term than anythign else.

BAE is rumoured to get approx EUR4.3Billion from the sale, with EADS orderbook sitting at EU253billion, 2005 profits at EU1.68billion. Theres plenty of capital there to have the entire share deal financed externally in such a way as to make little impact on the current situation.
 
DAYflyer
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:19 am

Although I am widely known as a big Boeing fan, I do not think that this will be the disaster that some think it will be for Airbus. While it may be best for them to totally redesign it and wait two more years before launching this airplane, the facts are that they do not intend to do a complete redesign. They see it as a viable option to the 787 and 777-200. And 40% market share is by no means small. Either scenario is a huge gamble for Airbus, but the real test will come when the 787 enters service. If the 787 fails to meet expectations for one reason or another, then the A-350 could be poised to take back the market. If the 787 meets or exceeds expectations, then the A-350 becomes the runner-up.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:20 am

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 20):
I think it WILL happen in the next 5 years

There was a thread on here a couple months back quoting Boeing I think it was saying the engine manufacturers couldnt deliver a new engine before 2015. No new engine means no new aircraft, when was the last generation of aircraft launched without a new engine in the deal? It would be like launching the 787 with the 767s engine, nearly pointless.
 
rigo
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:21 am

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 8):
I asked this on another thread, but never got an answer. Even if Airbus were to design a new aircraft to compete with the 787 would it offer significantly better performance? Wouldn't there be a rough parity, i.e., composite fuselage, same engines, etc.? How much wider could you make the fuselage w/o drag being a significant factor?

Most certainly not. Developing a plane on par with the 787 would need an additional investment of +/- 3 b$ and would delay EIS by 3 or 4 years. Basically this would mean abandonning the market to Boeing completely. Redesigning the A350 now would make sense only if the new A350 was not on par, but definitely superior to the 787, to justify the later EIS and to convince airlines to wait a few more years instead of buying 787s. It does not necessarily mean a composite fuselage or bleedless engines (their respective advantages in practice are yet to be seen), but in any case it would demand a dramatic improvement in performance over the current proposal.

Given the huge cost this would imply, and given the fact that Airbus has currently large investments engaged and would rather not ask for more government loans until the WTO case is settled, it seems extremely unlikely.
 
slz396
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:25 am

Funny, until about a year or so ago, virtually NOBODY on this civil aviation forum knew about the existence of the A400M project and now all of a sudden it is -wrongfully- dragged into every discussion by a handfull of well-known Boeing supporters to proof just how tangled up Airbus is.

BoeingBus, I suggest you do some reading before you speak out:

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 15):
Airbus Military is owned by EADS as it's all one big happy family, Airbus is just the name of their commercial airplane division.

Airbus Military SL (Sociedad Limitada) was established in January 1999 to manage the European A400M military transport aircraft project and has in fact a totally different share holders structure than its civil counterpart Airbus SAS.

http://www.airbusmilitary.com/airbus.html

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 15):
The EU may offer some money but there is still risk and R&D that is absorbed by EADS and only recouped if they sell.

The EU has nothing to do with the A400M. The A400M program is a military project, 100% funded by 7 governments (Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Turkey (not an EU member state), and The United Kingdom) and no financial resources of Airbus SAS nor EADS are committed to this programme.

http://www.airbusmilitary.com/commitment.html

Airbus Military SL is responsible for:
commercial activities including marketing, sales and contract administration;
financial and administrative activities including cash management;
procurement activities including the power plant and coordination for systems;
overall programme development.
During the development stage, the overall programme management including technical, industrial and ILS leadership is subcontracted to Airbus SAS.

http://www.airbusmilitary.com/organisation.html

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 10):
Let's hope for Airbus sake that Boeing doesn't launch the 737 replacement in the next 10 years. This would add even more complexity for Airbus.

While Y1 may be more known to you, there is also something very similar in the pipeline at TLS, called the NSR....
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:26 am

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 21):
EADS dont have to buy BAEs shares, the options give them a first refusal but it would be beneficial for them to buy them over an unknown third party.

hmmm.. third party... like the French government further increasing their stake by purchasing these shares via CDC???

"The acquisition fits in with a call from French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin for CDC to buy holdings in so-called strategic companies to keep them out of the hands of foreign investors.

The French government already owns 15% of EADS and this move will change the previously carefully preserved balance between the major French and German shareholders. The other national interest is Spain's Casa. "

http://euronews.net/create_html.php?...ge=detail_eco&article=353355&lng=1

I can see why BAE wants to exit EADS as its become such a political circus...
 
deltadc9
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:30 am

Quoting N328KF (Reply 14):
To add to that (take it in what ever way you please), General Electric under Welch had statement that if they weren't #1 or #2 in a product category, they didn't bother playing in it.

Sombody should tell that to the GE home appliance division. They suck.
 
787engineer
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:33 am

Quoting Slz396 (Reply 5):
is it really necessary to have a new topic about the A350 and the possible (re)design almost EVERY single day?

Last I checked this is the first article posted on this topic in almost a week. Yes there were several articles posted about a week ago, and the threads went on for a few days. An article isn't posted every day, more like twice a week. Can you not stand for some criticism of Airbus? If Boeing was in the same situation and there were just as many new articles out there on the topic, I'm sure there would be just as many new threads.

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 8):
Wouldn't there be a rough parity, i.e., composite fuselage, same engines, etc.? How much wider could you make the fuselage w/o drag being a significant factor?

I personally don't think Airbus will go with a composite fuselage. They've been pretty steady about the fact the won't use composites on the fuselage for several reasons, to go back on it so soon (2-3 years if the 787 proves composites are indeed better). . . well that would involve swallowing some pride and I'm not sure if Airbus is up to it. An Al-Li fuselage is fine and is familiar territory (and relatively inexpensive). Either way a wider fuselage would definitely be worth it for future stretches up to the ~350 pax territory.

Quoting Kaneporta1 (Reply 4):
I think Airbus should do what they did with the 330 and 340, develop 2 planes together. Keep the A350 as it is and try and get as much of the market as possible (around 30% or so) and develop a 'new' A360 in parallel, 2-3 years behind the 350, with the 350 wing, a new fuselage and engines, to compete at the 300-400 pax market.

As much as I would like to see Airbus embark on a completely new airplane, I'm unsure about how it could be developed together. With the a350, Airbus is betting on there being some unforseen issues with the 787 as there always is with new technologies. What made the A330/A340 possible to be developed in conjunction was the same fuselage cross-section. This allowed a lot of similarities in tooling, manufacturing techniques and flexibility of the assembly line to build more A330s or A340s as demand shifts. The common cockpits, systems and similar wings were also a big benefit.

You probably know more about wing design then I do, but from what I know, I would think the wings would have to be redesigned fairly significantly if you change the cross section, even by just several inches. You also lose commonality of a lot of tooling if you go with a new cross section or composite fuselage. With a compostie fuselage Airbus would also lose commonality in manufacturing techniques. I think a dual design like the A330/A340 would have been perfect if Airbus had decided that from the very beginning. Have the A350 compete against 789/787-10 and the 772, while the 'A360' takes on the 773 and 747. The A332 could be tweaked and updated to maintain some orders against the 788 until the new A320 replacement comes along to cover the 125-275 pax range.

Quoting DeltaDC9 (Reply 13):

The argument that "we cant overtake Chevy and Ford" holds no water here, so why should "we cant beat the 787" be that that big a deal for Airbus. SOMEBODY has to be second or third in sales, as long as you make an aceptable profit its all good. The goal of being number 1 should not cast a negative light on doing good business selling an excellent second best selling product.

 checkmark 
Absolutely correct, there's nothing wrong with the A350 coming in second behind the 787. Airbus put in a much smaller amount of money into the A350. It was never meant to revolutionize the industry (and revitalize a company). The a350 will sell, and sell enough to make Airbus a pretty penny, but not give them a cash cow.

Quoting Parapente (Reply 16):
If they did not fill it up they would be flying "air" with "deep Thrombsis" pasengers.No they are asking for more capacity! Boeing has had to move rapidly from the Dash 8 to the Dash9 ,to the Dask9HGW,and then forced to bring forward a New dash 10.Their first attempt was to trade range for more Pax-even that was turned down!
There are no 787 engines even capable of producing the thrust required to power a 787-10 9,000 miles!
The airlines are asking for a bigger plane full stop.

You, my friend, need a dose of reality. The original three 787 derivatives were lauched together (-3/-8/-9). Boeing was hesitant to launch the 787-10 which is what some airlines wanted since 1) the engine suppliers had yet to promise they they could and were willing to make the more powerful engines and 2) Boeing was worried about eating into the 772A/ER sales with the 787-10. Boeing did not scramble to get the -9 together after the -8. Also, so what if their first attempt was turned down; it's the obvious choice. If an airline wants more pax capacity the cheapest way is to decrease range. If Boeing was able to convince the airlines that less range was acceptable it would've saved Boeing millions of dollars. You can't blame Boeing for giving it a shot. The airlines don't think the 787 is too small, as your implying. The airlines love the efficiency of the current 787 models and know that a stretch (to a certain extent) would further reduce the already outstanding (promised) CASMs
 
Lumberton
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:35 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 12):
A clean-sheet A350 would use the same engines as the B787 and probably the same generation of composite technology. However, Airbus would have an advantage in aerodynamics.

Thank you for your answer, Zvezda. So...would these putative aerodynamic improvements be sufficient to warrant the re-design, given the additional costs, delay of EIS, impact on customers, etc?
 
zvezda
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:42 am

Quoting Lumberton (Reply 29):
So...would these putative aerodynamic improvements be sufficient to warrant the re-design, given the additional costs, delay of EIS, impact on customers, etc?

That's essentially the question that Airbus are struggling with now. It seems that some Airbus executives think yes and some think no. The least informed of them is better informed than I am. We'll just have to wait and see what they decide. There are very good arguments on both sides.
 
NAV20
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:44 am

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 21):
EADS dont have to buy BAEs shares, the options give them a first refusal

Sorry, RP, not correct. BAE has a put option which means exactly what it says. They 'put', EADS has to buy at valuation.

"BAE has a "put" option that forces EADS to buy its stake for cash or shares. So far it has not enforced the "put", but has entered negotiations to sell its stake. "We want to sell, and they want to buy," said a spokesman.

"Any sale could take six months. The two sides must now agree a valuation, advised by three investment banks."


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/mai...?xml=/money/2006/04/08/cnbae08.xml

For further confirmation, somewhere in their 2005 results EADS said they were making a balance sheet provision of E3.5B. for the liability.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:48 am

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 31):
Sorry, RP, not correct. BAE has a put option which means exactly what it says. They 'put', EADS has to buy at valuation.

I remember reading a similiar thing on the BBC, but with an additional clarifier that EADS could refuse the put and BAE could then go to market. BAE cant go to market unless EADS refuse the put. I dont think EADS will refuse tho.

I shall try and hunt the page for the above down.
 
norcal
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:49 am

Even if Airbus only manages to bag about 30%-35% of this market with the A350, (it will be more than that because it is a good plane and will work nicely for current A330 operators) that is approximately 1000 planes and for a $5 billion, that is a good ROI. They just have to weigh their options and decide which provides the best ROI, in the end they are a business and that is all that matters. Airbus is by no means in trouble, things might not be as rosy as they were a few years ago, but this most certainly is not the end.
 
max999
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:53 am

Quoting Halibut (Thread starter):


I am coming to the conclusion that Airbus , regardless what they do , are now years behind Boeing in the widebody market .

As many have stated before me, the sky is NOT falling over in Toulouse. This kind of spin is unnecessary in this forum; it puts people on the defensive and amplifies the A vs. B wars on here.
 
Tom_EDDF
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:53 am

Things go in cycles. If I was Airbus, I'd let the majority of 787/777 class widebody sales go to Boeing, as already happened or likely to happen soon with many of the big deal orders for a 2008-2012 replacement cycle.

A redesigned clean sheet A350/A360 won't come early enough to be ready before 2012-2014, and by that time, large customers will already be getting 787's and keep them for at least 10 years or so. If I'm not mistaken, the next big widebody cycle will start around 2016-2020 or so, when many of the later 777-200ER as well as the 777-300ER and A340-600 models are due for replacement.

Airbus should let the current wave go to Boeing, capture let's say 30% or so with the proposed A350 as an A330 derivative and then come up with an all-new widebody before the end of the next decade. By that time, newer generation engines will become available and innovation in avionics, materials and aerodynamics are likely.

Once the A388 and A400M work is done, Airbus should focus on an A320-replacement for EIS around 2015, potentially using an optimized A320 cross section, next-generation IAE/CFM engines and maybe a choice of two different wings supporting different mission profiles and take off weights to make the A321 follow-on work as a 757/A310/A300 replacement.

Unfortunately, I'm not Airbus  Wink

Cheers
T
 
slz396
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:55 am

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 31):
BAE has a "put" option that forces EADS to buy its stake for cash or shares.

Indeed there is a put option (as well as a call option) in the agreement between EADS and BAE, so EADS has to buy the BAE shares at a guaranteed minimum price, however it seems the value of the BAe share is higher than that and BAe Systems would want EADS to pay more for them.
This however is not enforceable and thus part of negotiations....

If EADS really wants to get out of the put option, all they have to do is to offer the minimum price of the put option as I'd reckon BAe won't sell at that price!

However, EADS has said several times they DO want to buy and although we are all focusing on a money deal now, it could very well be EADS buys out BAe in shares (of EADS) in the end.
 
boeingbus
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2

Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:58 am

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 23):
I think it was saying the engine manufacturers couldnt deliver a new engine before 2015.

Exactly... EIS date of 2015 is exactly what I was thinking. It's only 9 years away... of course, development starting much sooner and I believe Pratt is in the lead... So within the next 5 years you will hear more definite news for a 2015 launch.

Again, its all about timing... and during the next 9 years Airbus will have its hands full with the wide bodies. This was all I am trying to say.

Quoting Slz396 (Reply 25):
and no financial resources of Airbus SAS nor EADS are committed to this programme.

I guess all the media has it wrong...

Why don't you read some news on these topics...

http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ne...A400M+EADS+Airbus&btnG=Search+News

I guess it's all technicalities...

Quoting Slz396 (Reply 25):

While Y1 may be more known to you, there is also something very similar in the pipeline at TLS, called the NSR...

All I am saying is that NSR is not FREE and it requires some Euros to finish.
 
User avatar
N328KF
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:02 am

Quoting Slz396 (Reply 36):
However, EADS has said several times they DO want to buy and although we are all focusing on a money deal now, it could very well be EADS buys out BAe in shares (of EADS) in the end.

The last thing BAE wants is to hold shares of EADS. That would leave them in the same political wicket they're in now. BAE really wants to be an Anglo-American company, and the only way they can do this is to exorcise as much of its association with EADS/Airbus as it can stand.

[Edited 2006-04-17 18:03:23]
 
slz396
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:05 am

Quoting BoeingBus (Reply 37):
I guess all the media has it wrong...
Why don't you read some news on these topics

Would you be so kind as to actually a link to a reputable source saying the A400M is not entirely financed by OCCAR, rather than link me to a google page with numerous hits for a search on the vague wording 'A400M EADS Airbus'?


I've always told myself never to do this, but now I will:
just have a look at my profile to see what I do for living....
(BNB stands for 'Banque Nationale de Belgique')
I'd reckon I'd have a pretty good idea of just what my country is financing on this military project it is involved in, don't you think?
 
NAV20
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:06 am

Anything which was 'refuseable' wouldn't be put into the balance sheet as a liability, RP. Knew I'd seen it somewhere:-

"Revised application of IAS 32 standards required changes regarding the accounting for the put option granted to BAE Systems as a minority shareholder of Airbus (20 percent). These changes contributed € 289 million to Net Income (FY 2004: € 185 million) or € 0.36 to earnings per share (FY 2004: € 0.23). These changes also resulted in the recognition of the put option in the balance sheet as a liability for puttable instruments (€ 3.5 billion). The liability replaces the minority interest for BAE Systems’ 20 percent Airbus stake in EADS’ balance sheet."

http://www.eads.net/web/lang/en/1024...F00000040950509/0/75/41289750.html

It could be that EADS is asking BAE (nicely, saying 'Please'  Smile) to see if the market would care to buy them out instead of EADS having to do it. If I was in EADS' place, bearing in mind the horrendous 2006 cash flow implications, that's what I'd do!

But BAE remains firmly in the driver's seat.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:13 am

Quoting NAV20 (Reply 40):
Anything which was 'refuseable' wouldn't be put into the balance sheet as a liability, RP

Fair enough, but with the increase in profitability over the past few years (2005 was nearly 40% up on years previous), EADS isnt in the dire straits everyone seems to be eager to assume and EU3.5billion isnt that much when offset against a EU253billion ordersheet, certainly its good enough to get independant financing on.
 
kaneporta1
Posts: 743
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:17 am

Quoting 787engineer (Reply 28):
As much as I would like to see Airbus embark on a completely new airplane, I'm unsure about how it could be developed together. With the a350, Airbus is betting on there being some unforseen issues with the 787 as there always is with new technologies. What made the A330/A340 possible to be developed in conjunction was the same fuselage cross-section. This allowed a lot of similarities in tooling, manufacturing techniques and flexibility of the assembly line to build more A330s or A340s as demand shifts. The common cockpits, systems and similar wings were also a big benefit.

You probably know more about wing design then I do, but from what I know, I would think the wings would have to be redesigned fairly significantly if you change the cross section, even by just several inches. You also lose commonality of a lot of tooling if you go with a new cross section or composite fuselage. With a compostie fuselage Airbus would also lose commonality in manufacturing techniques. I think a dual design like the A330/A340 would have been perfect if Airbus had decided that from the very beginning. Have the A350 compete against 789/787-10 and the 772, while the 'A360' takes on the 773 and 747. The A332 could be tweaked and updated to maintain some orders against the 788 until the new A320 replacement comes along to cover the 125-275 pax range.

Ok, to get things straight here, I assume people here know that Airbus has taken into account the customers' remarks and is examining all the options on the fuselage size. What this means is, whether or not the 350 will end up with a new fuselage, time and money is being spent on this. My thought is, the A300/330/340 diameter is just fine for the 250 seat market. The problem for me is the 787-10 and the Y3. The 340 is pretty much dead and a stretched 350 would just not be efficient enough to compete. With the current wing capable of carrying higher MTOWs, my guess is, it wouldn't need significant modification, to take a different fuselage and more weight. The wings are connected to the center wing box, that will have to be modified, but not the wings themselves.
Now, with the time and money already being spent 'examining all options' why not develop a new larger aircraft family based on and sort of 'in parallel' with the A350 (retaining components, manufacturing methods, some development costs) but on the same time, keep the A350 for the 250 seat market, keep the customers that have already selected the aircraft happy, and get a decent ROI.
 
steeler83
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:25 am

Tom_EDDF, you make pretty good argument there regarding what Airbus would or should do if you were in a position to make decisions for them. What you say appears to make sense. The widebodies that Boeing sells appear to be selling more than the Airbus widebodies, especially with the 777, than Airbus did with the A330 and A340. Many on here have stated that the A340 was essentially a flop, and looking up the number of airlines that fly that bird and how many they have, I suppose it would be safe to say that it didn't sell well.

The A380 appears to be in a class by itself. It's a pretty neat bird and for the time being and has at least two orders by other airlines for it. SQ has an order for 10 pax versions and FedEx has an order for the freight version as well. Many other airlines are looking at the A380, according to other links and posts on the forum here, but will any of them actually order the A380 and follow through with those orders? Just saying that they're interested in them doesn't always warant a confirmed order for any aircraft.

The way things are going right now for Boeing and Airbus right now, I suppose that would make sense, as I stated before. The A320 aircraft are outselling the 737NGs, even though the 737 in general has just delivered its 5,000th plane and the A320 is not even close to that milestone. I can see the A320/321 as a replacement for the 757, but the A300/310? I thought that the A300 and 310 are considerably larger than the A320 aircraft... Aren't both the A300 and 310 in the 200-300 pax category, and what about the range for the two birds, the A300/310 and the A320/321...
 
jacobin777
Posts: 12262
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:25 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 12):
Airbus would have an advantage in aerodynamics.

how do you arrive at that conclusion?

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 18):
In the single-aisle size, I think the benefit of aerodynamic advances since the A320 might exceed the benefit of a composite fuselage.

until there are better engines, I doubt we'll see too much..maybe some 787-technology incorporated into the 737, but that's about it for now..

my intuition still tells me the 787 is going to do much better than what most think...aka-777 versus 340 competition...

not to mention the 787 has a much lower acquisition price...
 
Tom_EDDF
Posts: 424
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:28 am

Quoting Kaneporta1 (Reply 42):
My thought is, the A300/330/340 diameter is just fine for the 250 seat market. The problem for me is the 787-10 and the Y3. The 340 is pretty much dead and a stretched 350 would just not be efficient enough to compete. With the current wing capable of carrying higher MTOWs, my guess is, it wouldn't need significant modification, to take a different fuselage and more weight. The wings are connected to the center wing box, that will have to be modified, but not the wings themselves.

Not sure you wanna go after Y3 with a (relatively) outdated wing based on the original A330/340 design, optimized for M.80-.82 cruise, compromising efficiency by being designed for both twin and quad configurations and, most important, already stretched to the max with the modifications done for the 380t version of the A346. Wing loads have already reached very high levels by any means on the A345/A346. If you want to launch a Y3 competitor based on this wing, you won't be able to grow in MTOW much beyond 380t.

My assumption would be they need a new wing as well, with a greater wing area, increased sweep and some other modifications to enable MTOW growth and better efficiency at higher cruise speeds around m.85.... maybe they can leverage the basic aerodynamic design of the A380 wing as a start.
 
jaysit
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:30 am

If the A350 is to have a new wing, new powerplants, new tailplane, new avionics, etc etc, why is the A300 cross-section that has worked so well all these years a problem? Because it only allows a 8-abreast seating capability whereas the 787 can ostensibly pack in 9 abreas?

If the A350 can offer similar operating efficiencies as the 787 with the A300 cross section, then why is everyone having a hissy fit? I can see why aircraft afficionados would be bored with an airplane that essentially looks like a souped up A350, but the number crunchers shouldn't care less. After all a 738-NG looks like a 732 in part, but its anything but.
 
BoomBoom
Posts: 2459
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2005 2:26 am

RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:32 am

Quoting Halibut (Thread starter):
A costly redesign which would be the fifth could spell big trouble for Airbus, delaying the plane until 2012, four years after the expected availability of the Boeing plane.

Look what a one year delay bringing the DC-8 did to Douglas in the late 1950s:

Quote:
Despite its stronghold on the world airliner market in the early 1950s, Douglas initially moved cautiously into the field of jet powered transports, an action which was to cost it in potential future sales over the following decades.

Entry into commercial service with launch customers United and Delta was on September 18 that year, a year behind the Boeing.

Unfortunately for Douglas, that year's delay allowed Boeing to seize leadership of the jet engined airliner market, a position that only now is under serious challenge. The earlier availability of the 707 meant that initial sales of the DC-8 were relatively slow.
https://www.airliners.net/info/stats....d=192

What will a possible FOUR year delay do to Airbus?
 
zvezda
Posts: 8886
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RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:33 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 44):
how do you arrive at that conclusion?

A clean-sheet A350 would be about 4 years behind the B787. Computational flow models would be better. Airbus could do 6 times more modeling for the same price since computers double in performance every 18 months. Plus the whole field of aerodynamics would be 4 years farther along.
 
widebodyphotog
Posts: 885
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 1999 9:23 am

RE: Airbus In Pickle Over A350-2 Redesign Or Not 2?

Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:41 am

Quoting Astuteman (Reply 9):



Quoting Astuteman (Reply 9):
For me a next best option would be to develop a new A350 X-section, say, 12" or so wider than the current cross-section. By keeping the keel-to-deck height the same as it is now, they could move the widest point upwards in the cabin, and (even with a circular cross-section at this size,) have about 6" or so more space from deck to headrest height than the 787, giving comfortable 9-abreast seating.

I believe that would answer most customers criticisms of the A350.

That cross-section could then be applied to the A345/6E programme, together with the newer/lighter A350 type materials and (dare I say it) 4 x Trent 1500's of 10%+ better SFC (if Lightsaber's rumours are anywhere near), producing a far better A345/6E than is being considered today.

Yes, it's still a quad, but it would mean a common cross-section again, and, for the same level of investment in the A345/6E as is currently being considered, produce a much better aircraft.

Not ideal, perhaps, but could well be a workable medium term solution.
A

One thing that leaps out at me as a consequence of this strategy is that imagine how much heavier this airplane would be than the current version with an extra circumferential meter of ribs stringers, skin, etc., all made out of aluminum, as Airbus refuses to see the benefits of an integrated composite airframe...The A350-900 is already 34,000lbs heavier than the 787-9 and at least 15,000lbs heavier than a potential 787-10 challenger. The A350-8 is 19,000lbs heavier than its direct competitor, 787-9. What good would it be to redesign the A350 to compete in terms of cabin space if you A: build an airplane that is so heavy that it needs new higher power engines to make the payload/range demanded by the customers and B: It's service entry into the market is so late it has very little impact on the sales momentum of the established rival...


In order to redesign the A350 into a formidable 787 competitor Airbus has to consider how to deliver better performance than the Boeing product will have six years hence, but at the same time they are unwilling to abandon the principles that have gotten them in the situation they are in now. From my point of view if there is to be considerable redesign of A350 it needs to focus on one fundamental aspect. MAKE THE AIRPLANE LIGHTER...

If the plane is lighter it burns less fuel, can more effectively use engines that the engine manufactures have already committed to, and increases the flexibility of the aircrafts efficient applications. Make the airplane lighter so it costs operators much less to operate in the face of other tangible advantages of the competition. I mean if you're saving loads of money on the operation who cares if you can stick an extra seat in per row...

With all that said, the reality is that Airbus won't make the A350 a lighter, more efficient aircraft. They will most likely become ever more agressive on pricing... Maybe that's the correct thing to do after all it is an inferior product so it should cost less....



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