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speculation given a "what if"

Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:04 pm

Boeing introduced the B737-300 "classic" (first delivery 28. Nov. 1984) which had an exit limit of 149 seats, but was normally configured with 126 seats the longest flight it was used on was a charter from Edmonton to West Palm Beach a GC range of 2,184 nm (slightly longer than JFK-LAX: 2,151 nm). The model was a big success accumulating over 600 orders by the end of 1987 and well over 1100 orders until its replacement, the Next Generation B737-700, began delivering in 1997.

The first A320 delivered on 28 March 1988 which provided an additional 1000 nmi of range over the B737-300, and an exit limit of 195. Of course, the immediate response by Boeing was to begin delivering the B737-400 six months later which duplicated the payload of the A320 but not the range, and to begin work on the Next Generation B737.

What if the A320 had been delayed by 4-5 years? The events of 911 were 3 yrs, 9 mnths after the Next Generation started delivery. Do you think that Boeing would have been happy to keep offering it's aging but powerful B757 to airlines, or do you think that they would have started developing a trans-continental B737 just to fill a need if it didn't have the incentive of competition from Airbus?

It's an interesting thought exercise since Airbus seems to be using this down time for Boeing, by launching the XLR as pre-emptive competition for the NMA.
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Re: speculation given a "what if"

Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:14 pm

B757 sales dried up back then, hence why Boeing stop their production. They didn't stop producing it because they choose to, but because they are forced to.

Back then, A321 doesn't have the same popularity or performance as it is today. If you look at the delivery of A321. It started to reach more than 50 deliveries per year after the year of 2007. Which is 13 years after its initial launch in 1994. The delay for A320 in 1998 wouldn't really deter airlines since both of the series actually bloom late at their life stage. A320 reach more than 200 deliveries per year after 2008 too.

Airbus did XLR because they know they could capture the lower end of MoM. This put a really big dent on NMA.

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