In May this year the French-U.S. joint venture CFM International delivered the 25,000th example of its CFM56 turbofan, which powers Boeing Next-Generation 737s and the Airbus single-aisle family. Last month the 10,000th CFM56-7B for the 737 family was delivered, while next month deliveries of CFM56-5s for Airbus will pass 8,500. As well as these two influential single-aisle aircraft lines, the CFM56 also powers the Airbus A340-200/300.
By the time of the Dubai Airshow the number of deliveries had climbed to 25,600 and orders continue to come in strongly, despite the transition of production to the new LEAP engine family, which was introduced in 2008. CFM International (Stand 1881) reports that by the end of October the 2013 order book for the CFM56 stood at 1,172, taking total sales of the engine to more than 30,360. “In nearly 32 years of service–more than 25,000 engines–we have never once delayed an aircraft,” commented Jean-Paul Ebanga, CFM’s president and CEO. “It is an incredible record and we are very proud of what we have accomplished.”
The General Electric/Safran partnership expects to deliver around 1,500 engines this year and a similar number in 2014. By 2019 it aims to produce more than 1,700 engines, but the overall annual figure will increasingly comprise the LEAP range, which has been selected for the Airbus A320neo, Boeing 737 MAX and Comac C919 families. Despite the transition to LEAP production, CFM International has forecast that, based on the current active fleet of 18,000 engines, it will be still producing parts for the CFM56 beyond 2040.
This year CFM International had taken 1,255 LEAP orders by the end of October, out of a then-total of 5,607 engine orders. The company’s current backlog for both types of engine stands at 10,000.