It is made of: In the end, the market, not the market forecast, determined the fate of the Airbus A380. The Emirates airline ended its deliberations on the future of its largest aircraft. It canceled an order for 39 A380 aircraft and ordered 40 A330-900neos and 30 A350-900s in its place.
As expected, the change brought the end of the Airbus superjumbo. "As a result of this decision, we have no significant A380 backlog and thus no basis for maintaining production, despite all sales efforts with other airlines in recent years. This will result in the end of A380 delivery in 2021, "said Tom Enders, Airbus Chief Executive Officer.
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The timing of the decision is remarkable given the progress of leadership at Airbus. This marks the "painful" decision to wipe out the A380 at the end of Ender's term, rather than the first major decision of the Guillaume Faury administration, which will begin later this spring. For the first time since 1986, shortly before the launch of the A340, Airbus will only offer two jet aircraft.
Emirates has ordered a further 14 A380s and will own a total of 123 fleets at the end of the production run. Due to the Emirates' decision and the likelihood of orders from Air Accord and landlord Amedeo, the A380 production run was expected to end in 2007 at around 251 deliveries.
In 2017, before the A380 and the A350-1000 were combined into a single "very large" demand category, Airbus was of the opinion that 1,410 superjumbos would be needed over two decades. In 2007 there were 1,283.
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Emirates' decision was almost in line with a similar decision by Etihad Airways to significantly reduce its own order book. It now needs five Airbus A350-1000 (previously 62), 26 A321neos and six Boeing 777-9 (out of 35) "in the coming years". -J.O.
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