Re: new jetliner developments

From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works
Date:         03 Mar 93 01:16:25 PST
References:   1 2
Followups:    1 2 3
Next article
View raw article
  or MIME structure

In article <airliners.1993.217@ohare.Chicago.COM> Tobias Henry Lutterodt <luterodt@phoenix.Princeton.EDU> writes:
>My  own assessments of aircraft presently under development:

>A321:  Will be a mild success but will have trouble attracting non-A320
>customers because of the performance and versatility of the 757

Of course it's somewhat cheaper than the 757, and the 757 seems to be
used in many cases where its inter-continental range isn't not needed.
Still, I suspect your assesment is accurate, and with some of the really
large buyers (American, British Airways, Delta, United) all flying the
757 already the A321 (and A322 if it's built) seems to have something
of an uphill climb to true success.

>A330:  Likely to be a big success as long as it targets airlines who don't 
>need the size and range of the 777;  could be the next 767 of the Atlantic

The A330 is about midway between the 767-300 and the A market 777.  If
airlines already operating 767s think the 777 is too large then they
may go smaller than the A330, down to the 767-300.  Then again the
A330 may be a nice compromise between the two.  It's hard to say at
this point but the A330 has some stiff competition.  (From the MD-11,
too.)

>A340:  Will probably flop because airlines will soon be able to by two 
>engined aircraft to do the same job;  With today's reliablity, two are safer 
>than four!;  The aircraft is also underpowered and the cost and weight of 
>equipping it with RB211-535's or PW2000's will be unacceptable ...

While 180-minute ETOPS will allow the A330 (and 777) to do nearly the
same job as the A340, the A340 may still prove more economical.  The
number of engines isn't the only consideration -- witness the BAe-146
which seems awfully silly with four engines on such a little plane,
but has done fairly well.

Two engines safer than four?!  Perhaps slightly, but only because of
the added equipment and testing in a twin certified for ETOPS, and
that's expensive.  I think it's pretty far-fetched to consider safety
as a liability for the A340 versus the A330 and its competitors.

Looking at power/weight ratios, the A340 does appear to be a bit on
the anemic side, though it's still a bit ahead of the DC-8 Series 50
and Series 60 which in some regards it replaces, and not too far
behind the 747-100.  I'm not sure how much of a liability this is for
the A340.

Overall, your outlook for the A330 is sufficiently rosier than for the
A340, yet sales so far paint quite the opposite picture.  Either way,
even modest sales of both types individually could make them a
financial success due to their high degree of commonality.

>Boeing 777:  It's in a very hard fought three-way battle ...

You don't mention the third entry in this battle, the MD-11, which
seems to be foundering rather badly.

>MD-90:  Will be stillborn unless Douglas is much more aggressive about 
>finding new customers;  Nevertheless, the aircraft has distinct 
>advantages over its competitors (noise, pax comfort, ...);

Too late to be stillborn -- the first one was rolled out last month.
But MacDAC does have a serious problem with sales.

Advantages?  As far as I can tell the MD-90 is nothing more than yet-
another-stretch of the DC-9 (except for the MD-90-10 which fits in
between the MD-87 and larger MD-80 models) with the same wing.  Only
new engines and, I assume, updated avionics seem to distinguish it
beyond that.  And comfort has never been a word I would associate with
any member of the DC-9 clan.

Am I missing something on this one?

-- 
Karl Swartz	|INet	kls@ditka.chicago.com		
1-415/854-3409	|UUCP	uunet!decwrl!ditka!kls
		|Snail	2144 Sand Hill Rd., Menlo Park CA 94025, USA
 Send sci.aeronautics.airliners submissions to airliners@chicago.com