Nothing prevents them from having 2 versions. 757-200 has a 16J and 28J version. Y+ is different from premium economy.
True, but why? A high-J configuration with high CASM doesn't mesh with the demand model of secondary markets/leisure markets. It's taking an aircraft made for flexibility and making it more rigid.
exactly what I'm talking about. XLR allows the subdaily to go daily. it allows you a second daily to be added to the market that can support them. And you can support year round service on the thin routes.
XLR will over time replace the need of many B767/787.
Here's the deal with long-and-thin: no matter the aircraft, it's still long and thin. Economically it's a challenge. You need high yield to make the investment worth it. So even if it's within range, the XLR is limited in advantages. Really the 757 has already told us how UA will use them. If it wasn't worth flying with the 757, it's really not worth more with the A321. Yes, you're saving in variable costs, but is it worth paying for a new airplane to run at a low margin? No. The line of thinking that says a route is now viable simply because of lower fuel cost is generally fools gold. The route's economics is what drives the viability as long as there's an aircraft physically capable of flying the route--not the plane type. It's why we didn't see a flood of new routes open up with the 787, A350, A220, etc. The majority are simply replacing existing routes. We've seen UA launch some with the 787, yes, but what we see is generally because it's more capable, not just more economical (a smaller airplane - to fit lower demand profiles - can now fly a farther distance). That's not the case with the XLR. It's a near match in size to the 752, and it's not more capable at this point. You may get a few SQ SIN-EWR-type scenarios with the XLR, in which a route returns because of better economics on the cost side, but expect that to be the exception. I think UA said it best when they admitted that the XLR wasn't the perfect solution.
And once you get away from long-and-thin and into long-and-medium/thick, the XLR's strengths mostly evaporate. It's not going to be a CASM king versus a widebody, so you can't be the bargain leader. In high demand routes, you're playing from behind with market share unless it's used solely as an augmenting capacity. Product-wise you're behind simply because of the inherent drawbacks of a narrowbody cabin that can't accommodate the best of J and offers a cramped Y with only one aisle. You can play the low-risk, low-reward game as a minority market share holder, or you can play the LCC game, but the games of the XLR are limited, and it's playing out in the orders. A good chunk of the orders are now a straight 757 replacement, and in that small area it's the only game in town.
.. oh, good. more awful narrowbodies across the Atlantic. Brilliant.
Yeah, that part I'm not happy about, particularly not one that has very arguably a worse cabin than the aged interior design it is replacing. The engines are quieter, but the 757 interior design will still be as good or better. And neither come close to the room and design of a widebody. I just can't drum up the desire to fly on a narrowbody that long.