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End of the A340 line?

Old 13th Nov 2011, 01:49
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End of the A340 line?

From Flight Global:

EADS indicates "termination" of Airbus A340 programme

Airbus appears to have ended its A340 aircraft programme, according to details in the financial results of its parent company EADS.


The company said that the accounting implications of the "termination of the A340 programme" would result in a "positive one-off" of 192 million ($260 million) on its earnings before interest and taxes.


EADS did not provide further details of the cancellation.
The A340 programme was launched in 1987 alongside the twin-engine A330, and was a direct competitor to the long-range Boeing 777.


Sales of the both Airbus and Boeing twins climbed, but the A340 programme and its four variants yielded limited sales by comparison.
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 02:02
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It is actually a good move, the A340 is such a non-competitor to the B777, I'm surprise Airbus went on with it for as long as it did, and no doubt the actual performances of A340s vs. B777s do not give any airlines any reason to buy A340s. In fact, Airbus has not taken in an order for A340s in two years all the while B777s have kept-on racking up orders.

Airbus should concentrate on the wildly successful A320neo and make sure A350s don't suffer any more delays.
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 02:11
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I wonder what Airbus will do with the A340 being completed for the dear, departed Head of State of Tunisia?
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 03:29
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I think the writing had been on the wall for some time - unless your widebody has two decks, two donks appears to be the way forward as far as the industry is concerned.

I can't help but think of the RB211 VC-10 testbed on which it became very quickly apparent that two production RB211s would actually have suited the airframe a lot better than the four Conways.
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 06:04
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I have flown the 340-200 (the least said about that aircraft the better), the -300 and the -600. The -600 seemed what the 340 should have been in the first place. Takeoffs from JNB were a comparative 'non event' in the -600.

I always thought that my airline would have kept its -600's for JNB...but what would I know?

Fond memories of 'long thin' routes and interesting destinations in the -340.
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 09:40
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It's still got a bit of legs on routes where ETOPS twins can't legally fly, like the Pacific and South Atlantic routes.

I used to shuttle between London and LA on Virgin's 600's and I have nothing to bad to say about them. They're comfortable and well built. I also happen to think the long fuselage with those 4 big fans makes it very good looking.
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 16:45
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Rules change

The A340 was designed for the "long thin" routes of the time, when the ETOPS rules were diffent from now, while the A330 was for the "shorter and thicker" legs (Freud, where art thou?) and by skilful engineering Airbus was able to cover the different needs with, basically, one airframe.
A lot of statistical analyses were brought to bear on the FAA to prove that the 777 was able to cover the "long, thin and lonely" routes, whether overland or water, so the rules under which the A340 had the advantage were changed and in the Airbus line-up, the A330 was able to fulfil the role and '340 orders dried up - Darwin rules OK ...

Nothing in the above should be read as even hinting that the A340 was a "wrong" choice - it was "right" for its time - nor that there was any skulduggery in "Brand X" getting the rules changed. The rules were uinder constant surveillance since the time when the original A300 was allowed to fly services from e.g. Miami to the Caribbean, "way back when".
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 16:53
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How many 340s have been built?

Planemike
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Old 13th Nov 2011, 17:18
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But isn't it still so that if you want to fly Sydney-Buenos Aires or Johannesburg, or Cape Town-NY you pretty much have no option but to use 4 engines. Even with the latest 180 or 240 (or whatever they are these days) ETOPS regulations, you can't get to an alternative within that time.
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Old 14th Nov 2011, 03:47
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Today even four engined aircraft must comply with ETOPS rules.
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Old 14th Nov 2011, 07:49
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How many 340s have been built?
379 orders total have been placed, 375 so far built.

You do know,by the way, that a Google or Bing search can answer this and a million other such questions in about a tenth of a second?
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Old 14th Nov 2011, 14:49
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Stepwilk...

Thank you. Yes, I guess you are correct but it is great to receive an answer from a fellow "Prruner"......

Planemike
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Old 15th Nov 2011, 08:08
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I think the A346 scores higher than the Boeings on passenger appeal, certainly down the back where we travel. A two-seat row either side gives a travelling couple a window seat and an aisle seat, and the long fuselage gives a high proportion of the window seats the desired view of the geography below. We seek out a 346 service over a 744 or 777 on, for example, LHR-SFO.
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Old 15th Nov 2011, 09:23
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the desired view of the geography below.
Yes, nothing better on the LHR-SFO route than Greenland and Baffin Bay on a clear day.
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Old 15th Nov 2011, 11:52
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744 upper deck window seat for me, please. This dog will take four engines on a Boeing (or a DC-8 in the old days) anyday...but that's just me.

Flying on four since 1977. Why change now?
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Old 15th Nov 2011, 12:21
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Today even four engined aircraft must comply with ETOPS rules.
No they don't. They must comply with new EROPS rules (Extended Range Operations) but obviously they are not as restricted as twins who still have to meet ETOPs (Extended Range TWIN-engined Operations) rules as well.
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