Re: Boeing cancels 747-500X/600X?

Date:         19 Feb 97 02:46:21 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
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>Fridays 16th, Le Monde had a very interesting article on the battle
>between Boeing and Airbus for the >500 class.
...
>Boeing is now offering a brand new aircraft for 2006 to avoid
>airlines choosing the Airbus product. It is also reported that Boeing
>is threatening it's sub-contractors if they should participate in the
>A3XX project.

Sounds more like propaganda than educated reporting.  Boeing people
seem to know nothing about offering a brand new aircraft.  Quite the
contrary, Boeing seems to be focusing its efforts on derivatives of
its large twins, the 767 and 777.  See the current (February 17, 1997)
Aviation Week, p. 60, for an article on the subject including several
quotes from Michael B. Bair, Boeing's VP for Product Strategy and
Development.

One project, according to Bair, is a 777-200X with 720,000 lbs MGTOW,
allowing a range of 8,500-9,000 nm.  (From Chicago, Perth is about the
only interesting city outside that range.  New York to Singapore or
Auckland are possible, with Sydney being within reach if the 9,000 nm
range is achieved.  London to Perth is even possible, though the more
commercially interesting eastern cities of Australia, and New Zealand,
are still out of reach.)

The article notes a Boeing market analysis that determined that most
747s have been purchased for range, not capacity.  Here's how they
broke down the choices:

   60% range
   30% capacity
   10% Japanese domestic (obviously capacity, albeit specialized)

Given the dramatic shift in the trans-Atlantic market from large
planes flying between major hubs to smaller planes linking far more
city pairs, overflying the hubs, this shouldn't be too surprising.
With more liberal aviation agreements in the Asia/Pacific countries
and planes with sufficient range, the same thing is inevitable in the
Pacific.

The answer to congestion at airports like Narita is not bigger planes
to shove more people through there, it's overflying Narita wherever
possible.  United's ORD-HKG non-stop service is just a hint of what
the future will bring just as soon as politics and longer range planes
like the 777-200X allow it.

--
Karl Swartz	|Home	kls@chicago.com
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Moderator of sci.aeronautics.airliners -- Unix/network work pays the bills