28 September 2014

Airbus not convinced on the real market demand for a 400-seat A350-1100.

Airbus COO-Customers John Leahy said he is not convinced Airbus may have to stretch the A350 further beyond the -1000 version. “It is not obvious to me that we need 35 more seats,” Leahy said in an interview at the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT) Europe conference in Istanbul.

Source: © Airbus

Leahy claims that Boeing’s main motivation to stretch the Boeing 777-9X—compared with the Boeing 777-300ER—was to reduce unit costs rather than real market demand for a 400-seater.

He also argues that the -1000 will have a 15% trip cost advantage over the -9X. “I don’t know that I want to give that up. The added seats will be marginal,” he said, referring to the low fares for which he believes the capacity can be sold. “I think we might be better off staying where we are.”

Source: © Airbus

Some observers have argued that Airbus would have to build a larger version of the A350 to be able to compete with the largest Boeing twin.

Based on the article “Airbus To Look At Higher A350 Rates” published in Aviation Week

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