Tag Archive for A380

Is A380 losing out to smaller jets?

For a year, Emirates has been negotiating with Rolls-Royce
about the engines of the latest A380 order lot.
Now the airline could rewrite its contract to
smaller A350, with far-reaching consequences for
the entire A380 program.The news agency Bloomberg
had reported on Thursday evening, citing negotiating circles,
Emirates consider rewriting part of their announced A380
order on smaller A350. A year ago, Emirates announced a
"firm" order for 20 more A380s and 16 options in Dubai.
This order would have utilized A380 production for the
foreseeable future and kept the program alive. But if the
announced order can not be realized, the A380 threatens
the early exit, because too few new orders are received.
Although a well-known new customer for three aircraft was
won with ANA, the remaining orders, but some of them are
considered "card-rich", are not enough for a longer-term
program future. Airbus had already lowered the production
rate to 0.5 aircraft per month, commercially the lowest,
justifiable measure.
The tug-of-war over the signing of the Emirates contract
is said to be about the Airline's required improvements in
Rolls-Royce Trent engines. Supposedly, the Dubaier sign
their reordering only if Rolls-Royce contractually guaranteed
them a tailor-made "Performance Improvement Package".
Rolls-Royce, however, is busy with the costly aftermath of
the Trent engine problems on the Dreamliner and the
consequences of Brexit and is now reluctant to make that commitment.
Emirates often operates its A380 in extreme heat in Dubai on
extreme long-haul routes and requires maximum performance.
At Airbus, aircraft sales are generally negotiated separately
from the engines. The customer negotiates and orders the engines
selected by him independently of the actual aircraft. Only with
a signed package will the aircraft be built. Airbus merely
confirmed on Thursday that it was in discussions with its
customer, Emirates Airline, about its A380 contract.
Details of all customer discussions are confidential and would not be mentioned.
Meanwhile, this past spring, Airbus is transferring leadership
from Tom Enders to Guillaume Faury, who will join the Group
on April 10. This is an important moment for the promulgation
of policy decisions, such as for any A380 program end.
The Airbus Annual Press Conference will be held in
Toulouse in 14 days.