June 28, 2017

Airbus trounces Boeing at Paris Air Show

A320neo - there are so many of these in the skies over the next few years that even plane spotters will be yawning.

Airbus has piled on the orders at the Paris Air Show with Boeing a distant second.

Malaysian budget airline AirAsia created the largest single order of commercial aircraft in history when they signed up for 200 Airbus A320neo airliners worth around $18 billion.

The AirAsia deal trumped the previous biggest order record set only last Wednesday when Indian airline IndiGo ordered 150 Airbus A320neo’s and 30 A320’s worth $15.6 billion.

The main reason the Airbus has become the single aisle airliner of choice is the new engines that it deploys are more fuel-efficient.

Airbus, owned by the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS), has left US rival Boeing far behind in terms of orders at the event, as high fuel costs increase the demand for more fuel-efficient aircraft.

Airbus has taken firm orders for 586 aircraft, worth about $55.8bn, with a further $29.5bn in provisional orders.

Boeing, meanwhile, has taken firm orders for just 47 planes, worth $7.5bn, with another $14.9bn placed in provisional orders.

Canada’s Bombardier has received firm orders for 36 planes, with options for airlines to buy up to 26 more.

Russian-Italian joint venture Superjet International has signed a provisional deal to sell 12 Superjet 100 airliners to Italian carrier Blue Panorama Airlines for $370m.

The company, jointly-owned by Russia’s Sukhoi and a unit of Italy’s Finmeccanica, has 170 firm orders to date and delivered its first aircraft earlier this year.

The A320neo is a slightly modified version of the A320, with “sharklet” wing tips. Its new engines are 15 percent more fuel-efficient than the conventional A320, which should save airlines almost $1m per year per plane.

The fuel efficiency will also reduce CO2 emissions from each aircraft by 3,600 tonnes per year. In maintenance costs the A320neo is 30 percent cheaper than the A320.

With the Airbus proving so popular on the back of greater fuel efficiency, Boeing is going to have issues trying to match the European competition. The Boeing 737 its main rival to the A320neo sits very low to the ground. In order to fit the larger size fuel efficient engines, the 737 will need a major re-design.

At least AirAsia having all those new planes will give the South Korean military more targets to practice on.