August 2012

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Boeing, Airbus face delivery questions for 787, A380

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Within the last week, airlines and other media reports have begun to discuss further delivery delays for customers of the Boeing 787 and Airbus A380.

German publication Die Welt (German, English) reported that airlines are expecting delays of 27 months in deliveries for Boeing's 787. The report cited Air Europe, Gulf Air, Vietnam Airlines and British Airways as the impacted airlines who are expected to take delivery around 2012.

Boeing has denied any change to the delivery schedule.

"There has been no change since our announcement in April," said spokeswoman Yvonne Leach.

Monarch, Royal Jordanian and LAN ordered 787s in August 2006, December 2006 an November 2007 respectively. All have voiced concern that deliveries would be delayed between 24 to 30 months. Monarch and Royal Jordanian were expected to received their first Dreamliners in 2010 and LAN in 2011.

The first delivery of the 787-9, which LAN has ordered, has already been delayed to 2012 following Boeing's most recent schedule revision on April 9.

It is likely that the 17 month delay for initial deliveries to 787 launch customers like ANA, QANTAS, Chinese carriers, Northwest, Ethiopian, Air Canada and Air India plus a scaled back production ramp up has resulted in a further stretch of the delivery schedule. The original delivery scheduled had 109 787s being delivered by the close of 2009, Boeing now forecasts just 25.

For Airbus, a German magazine WirtschaftsWoche has reported that the European airframer would be delay A380 deliveries scheduled for 2009 and that customers have been informed of the change.

Airbus' largest A380 customer, Dubai based Emirates Airlines, has said any additional delay would cause an "acute problem" for near term expansion plans.

The existing production plan calls for 13 A380 deliveries for 2008, followed by 25 in 2009. Output is expected to peak from 2010 on at a rate of 45 per year.

Earlier this week, Airbus Chief Executive Tom Enders was reported to have said he is "conducting a major review" of this delivery plan. Airbus has delivered three A380-800 superjumbo aircraft to launch customer Singapore Airlines this year, for a total of four delivered.

Image Credits Boeing, Airbus

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