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Strictly for Airbus fans only!!!

Rick Lee Guest

No comment. The article speaks for itself. (just to keep the Boeing/Airbus debate alive) 😀

In the years prior to the decision to begin the project, both Airbus and arch-rival [[Boeing]] had spent a great deal of effort on considering the very-large-airliner market. Although both manufacturers issued varying statements from time to time, the unspoken but clear consensus was that there was probably room for ''one'' maker to be profitable in the 600 to 800 seat market segment, but not two. Both were conscious of the graphic illustration of the business risk involved in splitting a niche market provided by the simultaneous debut of the [[Douglas DC-10]] and the [[Lockheed Tristar]]: similarly sized tri-jet widebody airliners, either one of which would have profitably filled the gap between the [[Douglas DC-8]] and the [[Boeing 747]] if only the other one had not taken half its market. Having seen first [[Lockheed]] and then [[Douglas Aircraft Company|Douglas]] run into financial difficulties and be forced out of the air transport industry, Airbus and Boeing were very conscious that the decision to build a 600 seat airliner could not be taken lightly. Airbus has initially approched Boeing with an offer to develop the plane together, but Boeing declined. Boeing may have feared that a larger plane may threaten Boeing 747 sales.

Neither manufacturer could afford the enormous capital cost of developing an all-new airliner, especially one of A380 size, unless there was a reasonable expectation of having exclusive access to the market segment - and yet neither could afford ''not'' to develop a 600 seater if the other did. To do nothing would be to cede market leadership to the competition.

The initial advantage was with Boeing. Boeing's 747, although designed in the 1960s, had been kept up-to-date and was larger than Airbus' largest jet, the [[Airbus A340|A340]]. For many airlines, the extra size of the 747 made that type a "must buy" for their highest density routes, and the cost advantages of fleet commonality were an incentive to buy smaller Boeings as well. There was room to stretch the 747-400 and still retain reasonable seat-distance costs, while the A340, in its A340-600 version, has reached its upper limit.

After years of design studies and airline surveys, Airbus finally made the decision to go ahead with the [[Euro|€]] 8.2 billion A380 project in 1999. The design strategy was carefully crafted. Merely by being very large, the A380 could achieve much better seat-distance costs than any other aircraft (just as the 747 had done in 1969). Because the A340 wing was too small to be efficient at the sort of gross weights required for a 600 seater, an all-new design was needed. Given that the cost of starting from scratch was necessary in any case, Airbus chose ''not'' to select a wing that would be optimally efficient at around the 600 tonne maximum gross weight of the A380, but to aim it at the 750 tonne class instead. In doing this they sacrificed some [[fuel efficiency]] (because the A380 wing is too big for it) but the sheer size of the design coupled with the incremental advances in technology over the years still allows Airbus to claim 15% better economics than a 747 or an A340. The payoff for Airbus is that it will be a relatively easy task to make still bigger versions of the A380 which will reach their optimum cost-efficiency somewhere around the 700 to 800 passenger mark - close to twice the size of a 747-400.

For Boeing, the announcement of the A380 was a major blow: already faced with heavy expenditure to replace the aging mid-sized [[Boeing 767|767]] line, Boeing were then placed in the awkward position of having to replace their flagship 747 as well, or else cede market leadership to Europe. Boeing's first action was to announce the [[Boeing Sonic Cruiser|Sonic Cruiser]] concept - a 767-sized near-sonic aircraft that would compete on speed instead of size and economics, but a general lack of market interest has seen this project cancelled. Boeing has announced a plan to replace the 767 with the [[Boeing 7E7|7E7 Dreamliner]] but their intentions in the over 400 seat market remain unknown.

Despite the cyclical downturn that first gripped the airline industry in 2001, the A380 has been ordered by nine airlines so far. Perhaps more significantly, Airbus holds a substantial order from [[American International Group|AIG]]'s aircraft leasing unit, [[International Lease Finance Corporation|ILFC]], which indicates that industry analysts expect airline demand for aircraft in this size class to be strong in the later years of the decade. Current firm A380 orders stand at 129, including 17 freighter versions. Break-even is estimated to be around 250 to 300 units. Emirates have ordered over 42 of these airframes.

Initial publicity, particularly from the airlines which have ordered it, has stressed the ability of the A380 to provide increased room and comfort, with open space areas to be used as relaxation space, bars, duty free shops, and the like. Historically, the same type of prediction has always been made when a new, larger aircraft is announced - the 747 is an obvious example - but the economics of airline operation are such that the extra space is nearly always used for additional seating. (One exception to this rule is [[Virgin Atlantic]], which has a bar in first class on some of its newer airliners.) Given the history of the air transport industry to date, the key change that the A380 will bring to travellers is not extra comfort or lavish in-flight facilities, but more of the same difference that the 747 made - more seats and lower seat-distance costs.

Price:$330 Million

Read Banned 🤔 No, No! Umm... 😳 Surrender Unsure Yes 😕 😀:

Regards, Rick

9 Responses

crosscheck9 Guest

In the interest of keeping the "debate" alive, I would like to make a point. Before I begin, however, I have to state my position. I favor both Airbus and Boeing, for they both carry amazing aircraft, but within the next few years, I should be leaning to one side or the other...

Now, my point. As an individual passenger, when you travel, do you want to get to your destination faster, or with more people. Personally, I really don't care about how many people are in front or behind me. Secondly, it's size would require enlarged gates at the airport, more catering facilities, and probably longer runways. Also, the time it would take to get the aircraft prepared for takeoff, and taxiing time for such a heavy, would mean more inconvenience to the passengers. Think about, do you care if you fly with 40 or 400 people...NO....all you want, is to get from one place to another...quickly!!!

I am open to beneficial criticism, but once again, let me state that I am not with any side, I just wanted to make a point.

Guest FEM Guest

I agree with Crosscheck9. I Believe that while airlines do want a larger aircraft to carry passengers, they should consider passenger comfort as well. Imagine having the trots. Now imagine having the trots on an airplane with 799 other people, and only 5 bathrooms. Claim one, and claim it fast. Now that was a extraordinary circumstance that may never happen, but what if you just wanted to pee? I know I get grumpy when i can't pee. And my attention span lasts only so long. I can't keep busy for 12 hours at a stretch on a airplane! So I believe faster is much, MUCH better.

Pro Member Chief Captain
tomthetank Chief Captain

I lean towards Airbus only because they have more room(Im 5ft 13") 😂
and every Boeing I have been on,my knees are in my face(never been on a 747 so I cant comment on them)

Pax travel,in my humble opinion has stood still for far too long

Guest FEM hit the nail on the head,we want to get there QUICKER

Concorde was the future,only too soon

I Personaly wouldnt want to fly on the new Super Airbus(baggage reclaim is a nightmare now Evil or Very Mad ) and i would get lost on such a beast Embarassed

The future has to be speed,we want to get there and we want to get there now,not tomorrow

Pro Member Captain
Sam (SamIntel) Captain

tomthetank wrote:

I lean towards Airbus only because they have more room(Im 5ft 13") 😂
and every Boeing I have been on,my knees are in my face(never been on a 747 so I cant comment on them)

Don't the airlines choose the seating arangements?

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

TTT, i'm 2 inches taller than you, and so far I haven't had too many problems with tight seating. Maybe I've gotten lucky with the airlines.

I'm siding with Boeing all the way, simply because the only airbus i was on smelled and was cramped as all heck.

Pro Member First Officer
Greg (FL050) First Officer

SamIntel wrote:

tomthetank wrote:

I lean towards Airbus only because they have more room(Im 5ft 13") 😂
and every Boeing I have been on,my knees are in my face(never been on a 747 so I cant comment on them)

Don't the airlines choose the seating arangements?

Yes. When an airline buys their aircraft they customize it the way they want it.. Ie..Cockpit, Seating, everything.

Pro Member Chief Captain
tomthetank Chief Captain

You have not flown any UK charter flights then 😂

They realy cram them in Evil or Very Mad

I once asked for a window seat with a bit of leg room(booked) ROFL ROFL ROFL

Flew on a MD80......................sat right at the back,knees behind my ears Mad and my view was the right hand engine Evil or Very Mad

Guest

Fire_Emblem_Master wrote:

TTT, i'm 2 inches taller than you, and so far I haven't had too many problems with tight seating. Maybe I've gotten lucky with the airlines.

I'm siding with Boeing all the way, simply because the only airbus i was on smelled and was cramped as all heck.

I love boeing they have been around longer and are more efficant. I have only been on an airbus 2 or 3 times it was an americawest A319 I liked it but I love boing more Ha Ha

Guest

with both makers boeing and airbus they both have their pro's and con's.

Personal I like a few aircraft from both makers esp the 777 and the a330.
I think thatairbus has made the right move by making the a380 because the 747 has seen it's finest hour and it's time to move onto something much bigger.

On the other hand boeing has captured a niche market with it 777 long range and extra range aircraft which have a reasonable large compacity, fast, fuel efficent and long range getting rid of those preskey south-east asian stopovers....YAY

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