Boeing craziness (was Re: 767-400 "a different type"?)

Date:         06 Aug 98 11:26:09 
From:         Evan McElravy <evanm@penn.com>
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>Any comments? I knew the 767-400 was going to have an improved cockpit, but
>didn't realize the differences would be major enough that someone would
>considere it a different type. Do the cockpit differences mean pilots
>cannot be cross-rated with earlier 767s (and with 757s)? Conversely, can
>they be cross-rated with something else (747-400? 777?)
>
>If this is the perception by major users, I can't see the -400 selling
>well.

IMHO,  that is what blew the US Airways deal. Buying the 767-300/400 would
have added a new cockpit type into the fleet while buying A330 would add no
new cockpit types. Since US Airways wanted an aircraft larger then the 763,
Boeing would have had a much better chance of getting the order if the 764
could share a rating with the 757 and 767, both of which US operates. The
fact that Boeing filed suit against US (one of the most ignorant tricks I've
heard of), couldn't have helped relations either.

Between this boneheaded strategy, the absurdly conceived 757-300 and 737-900
(plus they are still making -300/400/500s) and the never-ending parade of
hairbrained 777 schemes, I'm afraid the boys in Seattle have lost a lot of
their focus in recent years. It is no surprise to me that Airbus is having a
banner year and will, in all liklihood, beat Boeing in orders this year.
With the cyclical nature of the industry, Boeing is in no shape for the next
downturn, which seems likly to be just around the corner.

And their marketing is poor, too. The 717 could potentially be a blockbuster
but they seem to be doing little to push it to airlines like Northwest, TWA,
AA, and even US that could very potentially be interested in buying it.
Customer confidence is plummeting (the similarities to Kodak's current
plight are startling) and I think a management change is in order.

Evan McElravy
evanm@penn.com