Date: 15 Apr 97 03:22:39 From: Chuanga@cris.com (H Andrew Chuang) Organization: Concentric Internet Services References: 1 2 Followups: 1
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In article <airliners.1997.916@ohare.Chicago.COM>, M Carling <email@example.com> wrote: > >I'm not sure why Andrew thinks that "the A340-600X will compete directly >with the B747-400 rather than the B777-300X." The Airbus will be between >the two Boeings in size and perhaps about the same range as the >747-400X. I think the A340-600X, if launched, will compete will both the >747-400 and the 777-300X. The A340-600X is practically the same size as the 777-300. The A340-600 is a long-range aircraft, while the baseline 777-300 is a medium-haul aircraft. The range of the 777-300X will probably be 1,000nm shorter than that of the A340-600 (not insignificant). Thus, the A340-600 will compete more directly with the B747-400 than with the B777-300X. As Karl pointed out, A340 is a four-engine plane, and the B777-300 is a twin. For regional operations, twins are a far superior choice; four-engine planes are overkill, irrepective if it's a Boeing or it's an Airbus. >The operating cost of the A340 at any given cruise speed is difficult to >reliably determine prior to development of its wing, which Andrew >indicates below will be developed. They should be ready to finalize the design any time now. Thus, they should have a good idea of the performance of the new wing. At first I thought they would optimize the wing at a speed comparable to that of the B777. Based on AW&ST's report, I doubt this is true. That's why they try to emphasize the speed difference will result in a "few" minutes' differnce in time. Hmmm.... I seem to recall Airbus made a big fuss about the A320's faster speed than B737's. >> Furthermore, with dedicated regional aircraft like the >> B777-300, operators can configure their aircraft accordingly. > >Operators are similarly free to configure their 747-400s as they see >fit. However, most don't. The few that I'm more familiar with, (e.g., Singapore, Malaysia, Cathay, China Airlines, EVA Air) don't have -400s in regional configuration. Some of them do have older versions (such as the -200 and -300) in regional configuration. >That's comparing apples and oranges. A 747-400 with regional seating >e.g. TG's seating configuration, has more seats than a 777-300 with a >regional (nine across) seating configuration. At slot limited airports >such as NRT, the 747-400 will remain attractive relative to the 777-300. Not really. In tri-class configuration, the 777-300 is about 30 seats smaller than the 747-400. NRT will see plenty 777-300s. You seem to have a misconception that the 777-300 is significantly smaller than the 747. Right from the start, Boeing targeted the 747-100/200 replacement market with the B777-300. >> If the B777-300X is launched, the new aircraft can be used to >> replace the B747 on routes like London-San Francisco, >> Tokyo-Sydney, etc. > >UA are already operating the 777-200IGW LHR-SFO. The 777-200 is significantly smaller than the B747-400; it's about 100 seats less. >> More importantly, even with the -600X, Airbus still doesn't >> have an answer for the baseline B777-300 and the proposed -300X. > >I'm not sure why you disqualify the A340-600X as an answer to the >777-300X. If you just don't think the airlines will buy it, let's let >the airlines decide. If you think it can't serve the same market, then >please let us know why. As I have said earlier, a four-engine, long-range aircraft will not be able to compete effectively with a two-engine, medium-range aircraft. Boeing has finally given airlines an efficient, large-capcity aircraft for regional operations. The A340-600 is simply not an ideal aircraft for regional flights, just like the B747-400 is not. Airbus was aware of the B747-100/200 replacement market as early as in 1990. They pitched stretched A330-400/A340-400 to airlines like Cathay Pacific. Unfortunatly for Airbus, they didn't have the right design. Cathay chose the B777-300, and the rest is history. It won't be cheap for Airbus to come up with a competitive A330-400.