Despite the fact that final assembly of the 4,000th example is now under way, the A320 single-aisle twinjet may be only at the midpoint of its production life, according to Airbus. Marketing vice president Colin Stuart has suggested that a 5,000th A320 could enter service in 2011.
Airbus Freighter Conversion (AFC), the joint venture established in March 2007 by EADS EFW, Airbus, United Aircraft Corporation and Irkut, yesterday signed a firm contract to convert 30 Airbus A320s and A321s into freighters for Netherlands-based lessor AerCap.
Lufthansa Technik is opening a customer service base for component services and a component pool at Domodedovo Airport in Moscow. The new operation will be implemented in two phases.
EADS Military Transport Aircraft (MTA) has set its sights on half of the aerial-refueling-tanker market estimated at 600 aircraft for 30 countries over the next 20 years and has brought the first of four A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) airframes for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) here to underline its capability in the field.
EADS expects to sign a firm contract with Aeroflot for 22 of the new Airbus A350XWB airliners here at the Paris Air Show this week, or perhaps at Moscow’s MAKS’2007 event in August. This follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding on the deal in March this year.
The first of four Boeing 767s destined for the Japan Tanker Program arrived at the modification center in Wichita, Kansas, last week for conversion into a KC-767 aerial refueler. The Japan defense agency ordered the tanker for the Japan air self defense force in 2001 after a competition between the KC-767 and the Airbus A310. Boeing plans to deliver the first Japanese KC-767 in December 2006.
In the last financial year Emirates Airlines boosted its profits by 49 percent, to a record $637 million on $4.9 billion in revenues, which is up 36 percent year-over-year. Passenger numbers increased from 10.4 million to 12.5 million and the average load factor rose from 73.4 percent to 74.6 percent. Many European and Asian routes drew average loads of more than 90 percent.
Federal Express has signed a 20-year contract with Pratt & Whitney for its off-wing fleet management program (FMP) covering 135 PW4000-94 engines powering FedEx’s fleet of Boeing MD-11s and Airbus A300s and A310s. According to P&W Global Service Partners senior vice-president Jim Keenan, the deal is one of the largest and widest ranging maintenance, repair and overhaul orders the company has received.
Thirty-five years of A300/A310 manufacturing will come to an end next July, when Airbus hands over the last A300-600 on order. Although it collected orders for 821 examples over the life of the program, the A300/310 series has seen flagging deliveries over the past few years as market demand for newer designs progressively overtook Airbus’ original offerings.
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