Airbus May Phase Out A380 if Emirates Deal Doesn’t Materialize

By Paul Riegler on 27 December 2017
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Airbus would phase out production of its A380 double-decker aircraft if it isn’t successful in obtaining a key order from Emirates, according to a report by Reuters citing several people familiar with the matter.

The A380, a two deck, wide-body, four-engine jet airliner, is the world’s largest passenger aircraft. It made its first flight in 2005 and was designed to challenge Boeing’s 747 jumbo jet, which went into commercial service in 1970.

In June of this year, Airbus unveiled plans for a more efficient A380plus version of the aircraft, with operating costs that would be 13% lower on a per seat basis than the current version of the plane and also seat more passengers thanks to a more efficient use of available space.

Emirates is reportedly interested in the A380plus but only if Airbus commits to producing the A380 for ten more years.

Demand has been weak for both the A380 and the Boeing 747-8, as airlines opt for smaller and more fuel-efficient twin-engine models.

Even if Airbus opts to discontinue the A380, the shutdown would be gradual as there are multiple existing orders from Emirates in the pipeline.

There have been growing question marks hanging over the future of the superjumbo for several years.

Just two weeks ago, a top executive at Airbus said the company was considering cutting production of the A380 to six or seven planes a year, but has made no final decision on the matter. Last week, several sources said that Korean Air, which first began operating the A380 in 2011, plans to retire at least one of its A380 jets.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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