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Future of the A380

Old 29th Jan 2016, 12:43
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Future of the A380

Not sure if right forum but this morning the Airbus CEO announced 3 new A380 firm orders from ANA ( a first in Japan) in addition to 12 for Iran Air , and discussion with some more "interested parties" . He also said that Airbus hoped more orders from the other Iranian airlines.
This combined with the fact that Boeing decided last week to halve its 747-8 production and probably stop it after the US Presidential order for AF1 replacements, is probably reshuffling the dices regarding the short term future of the A380.
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Old 29th Jan 2016, 13:21
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http://www.airbus.com/newsevents/new...ail/iran-deal/
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Old 29th Jan 2016, 13:41
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Given the size of the order, I am sure a kind of bulk discount is probable. I am wondering what discount Iran Air got for ordering the A380. And how many units this discount added to the break-even factor of the model. It used to be in the 600's but I feel it has moved somewhat.
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Old 29th Jan 2016, 15:47
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Arrow

Every time Airbus does announce a nex contract, some people come on the forums or magazines, with always the same interrogation: "I'm sure the customer got a good discount for them" .....
It has been like that for the past thirty years, starting with the A300 and A310 - so nothing new, I see. It's in fact comforting that the world is still turning in the same direction !

Remember the A 320 development - that little aircraft with FBW ? very unlikely they will sell it in sufficient numbers ...
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Old 29th Jan 2016, 17:10
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On the price , the CEO said the ANA order was 1,2 Billion " at current catalog prices " , so 400 Mo a piece.
The reporter asked what discount they got, he replied " about the same we gave Iran air" standard answer. and as said here, everyone gets a discount since the beginning of times.
If the Iran Air order was expected, the ANA order however is far more valuable as a symbol and indicative of a new trend.
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Old 29th Jan 2016, 19:34
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This combined with the fact that Boeing decided last week to halve its 747-8 production and probably stop it after the US Presidential order for AF1 replacements, is probably reshuffling the dices regarding the short term future of the A380.

Boeing still thinks there is a good market for the 747-8F. There are a whole lot of 747 freighters out there that are approaching retirement (north of 100,000 hours, and freighter cycles are typically more abusive than passenger since they typically operate close to MTOW and Max Landing weights). The only real competition to the 747-8F is the 777F, but the 747 can carry about a third more and with the nose door can better handle outsized cargo. The trick now is to keep the line going until the freight market picks up again and operators order more -8F.


If Boeing really believed the 747 was dead, slowing down the line wouldn't make financial sense - it would be cheaper to go ahead and build the order base (with a few white tails for AF1) and shut it down.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 15:33
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Find it saddening that no US carrier wants to order the 747, nor Australia or NZ, when the 747 made so much money for these carriers over the decades.

The sky is becoming an incredibly boring place with less 4 holers gracing the clouds.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 17:18
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tdracer : thanks you for your views, I am definitely not a Freight aircraft expert but note the following from an airline I know well :

Lufthansa is not very happy with the performance of their 747-8.
On routes where both types are operated in parallel ( like FRA-SIN) there is a huge difference in passengers booking preferences for the A380. I believe SQ has the same experience. ( but OK, passengers preferences are probably not the major deciding factor)
Finally Lufthansa Cargo replaced it 747Fs by 777-F

.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 19:23
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@ATC Watcher

A lot of non factual rubbish in your post. How could you say Lufthansa replaced their 747-200F with 777F when the 747's were retired in 2005 and the 777's entered service in 2013? The 747's were former Lufthansa passenger jets converted to freighters.
Lufthansa were initially disappointed with the 747-8 but that is to be expected with every launch customer and every new airliner experiences the same. Improvements were made to the 747-8 and googling will allow you to read about these improvements which has made Lufthansa a happy customer and one that endorses the aircraft freely on the Boeing website. Possibly the A380 experienced more issues than 747-8 when it entered service.
FRA- SIN is not operated in a parallel as you state since Lufthansa has one daily flight. If the 747-8 is operating the route it is most likely due to the fact that the bookings for the A380 are dire since the A380 is the aircraft assigned.
Another fact is Lufthansa cancelled 2 of their A380's on order. How many 747-8's did they cancel?
SQ have never operated the 747-8 and their last 747 passenger aircraft left in 2012.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 20:38
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 Another fact is Lufthansa cancelled 2 of their A380's on order. How many 747-8's did they cancel?
One 748 not delivered/accepted by LH

The LH 388/748 are deployed on differing routes and seasonally - The 388 has 127 more economy seats ideal for the likes of Miami/LAX India and Hong Kong for instance.

The up front yield capacity is actually pretty similar - The 748 does have the greater cargo capability.

BTW Lufthansa Cargo operate a declining number of MD-11F freighter delivered between the 747 and the limited number of 77F frames,

A number of 77F frames are actually operated by a joint venture with DHL under the Aerologic AOC.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 20:39
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Contract for long-lead activities for VC-25B was signed yesterday:

AF awards contract for next Air Force One > U.S. Air Force > Article Display

Congress still has to authorise the actual airframe procurement but this looks like a useful way of keeping Boeing engaged until the big-ticket contract comes through. In turn Boeing can try to keep the suppliers idling, other than those that have already bailed.

Once that's done and the VC airframes built... well, we'll see. Personally I think they'll gracefully shut-down the production line at that point, on a high note.
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 20:39
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The A-380 will survive. It's the only one of it's kind and, despite low numbers, it will plod along the production line for a long time. I predict.

As to discounts, which you can experience if you buy a new car 'Your road tax paid/cash back' it's all the same. When working in IT, I recall a company who did much business with the late (unlamented) Robert Maxwell. It was well known that Maxwell would call in the MD of the supplier and bluster about prices and how he would not sign blah-blah. The MD then reduced the price and Maxwell signed.

The company had, of course, put up the price in the quotation as they knew that they would be asked for a ridiculous discount for the privilege of supplying Maxwell and they did not wish to be driven out of business. I have worked with men who 100% 'got off' on negotiating a discount as proof of their manhood and domination over the other man, who was just trying to sell his product.

Nothing new under the sun ...
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Old 30th Jan 2016, 23:44
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Originally Posted by bannercounty View Post
FRA- SIN is not operated in a parallel as you state since Lufthansa has one daily flight. If the 747-8 is operating the route

LH and SQ codeshare flights, SQ run the A388 on FRA SIN and FRA JFK, I suspect ATC Watcher was referring to this.
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Old 31st Jan 2016, 07:06
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A380

I think Willy Walsh best summed up the A380 this week when talking about leasing some 2nd hand ones, along the line of great aircraft, but not very flexible route wise due to its size. It is perfect for slot restricted airports like LHR, but lets be frank without EK support where would it be?

I was surprised by the Iran Air order for the A380 I can't see the business case, yes flying an Iran Air A380 into Washington or JKF will be putting 2 fingers up to the hawks in congress who doubt that the deal on nuclear containment and the lifting of sanctions is in US interests, anyway lets see how they finance this order given the low price of crude.

I'm inclined to agree with PAXboy the production line will plod on and probably out live the B748-I, but just like Concorde I suspect the 747 program will have made more money for Boeing than the A380 will ever earn for Airbus.
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 10:51
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lets see - the 747 was a serious money loser for Boeing for many years

it was only really when the -200's arrived that they started to make cash on them

more people are flying and it's getting harder and harder to expand airports anywhere in the first World = more and more slot constraints = need for bigger and bigger aircraft
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 14:08
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Not to go off topic, but Boeing introduced the 777X wing-fold option (no airline has picked up this option due to higher maintenance costs i think) but i do believe this will be a crucial upgrade more airlines will look at in the future, and maybe even Airbus for the a380.
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 15:07
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Didnt Boeing patent the wing-fold design?
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 15:08
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Striker26

Think you are wrong, the folding wingtips of the new B777X will come as standard so the planes can keep within Code E stand width.

There was a plan years ago to put folding wingtips on the initial B777-200 but that one was dropped, you may be getting mixed up with that.

It isn't whether we like planes or not in relation to the 4 holers ,its all about efficiency. The modern planes with 2 engines are more economical than those with 4.

Boeing said last week that they expect the VLA market in the future to be just 1% of all long haul orders.

So on that back drop interesting to see what happens to the A380 in the future.

EK say they are planning to park A380s in the desert once they reach just 12-14 years of age.They then would replace with new ones.

However Airbus would need a lot more carriers than just EK to be willing to order a substantial number of A380NEOs before they launched such.

If they don't get them, then the 380 will fold. Goodness knows what EK do then, they would have to order 25-30% more 777xs just to keep the same capacity they have now with all their A380s.

Nigel
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 16:51
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"Boeing said last week that they expect the VLA market in the future to be just 1% of all long haul orders."

This is the Boeing whose only VLA is, according to this weeks's Flight, about to die of old-age - right?

Of course they're not going to paint a future for a market in which they have no viable contender nor any plans to compete in................
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 16:56
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Originally Posted by Heathrow Harry View Post
more people are flying and it's getting harder and harder to expand airports anywhere in the first World = more and more slot constraints = need for bigger and bigger aircraft
Iíve never been entirely convinced by this argument.

I donít think itís entirely correct to say that itís difficult to build new airports in the First World; Spain seems to have found it far too easy for exampleÖÖ The real problem lies with major hubs, particularly in areas that are already highly developed. Letís call them mega-hubs. I would agree that the A380 is ideally suited to flying between mega-hub pairs, but how many such pairs are there really? Willie Walsh, who I would guess knows more about running an airline than most of us, seems to think that the scope is limited. And the A380 isnít the only aircraft that airlines can upsize to if they need more capacity.

Another issue which needs to be considered is point to point travel. Ever larger aircraft flying between hubs isnít the only solution to increased passenger traffic. Modern twin jets can increasingly fly point to point economically to and between regional airports thereby relieving some of the pressure on the major hubs.

Finally, letís not overlook the second hand market. Some airlines are handing back A380ís, and Emirates may start to retire theirs in the not too distant future. Wonít the availability of these dampen demand for brand new A380ís?

Donít get me wrong Ė I can see the usefulness of the A380 and Iím not condemning it to a slow death, but I donít think itís the only game in town by any stretch of the imagination.
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