Re: UA A321 ?

Date:         26 Oct 98 02:59:28 
From:         Chuanga@cris.com (H Andrew Chuang)
Organization: Concentric Internet Services
References:   1 2 3 4
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In article <airliners.1998.1657@ohare.Chicago.COM>,
JF Mezei  <jfmezei.spamnot@videotron.ca> wrote:
>H Andrew Chuang wrote:
>> The A320 is a medium-haul, 150-seat aircraft.  It fills the B727 gap
>> that Boeing had left open when they marketed the B757 as the B727
>> replacement.  Airbus was smart enough to spot the opening and built the
>> A320.  The A320 has never been a *direct* competitor of the B737 just
>> like the B727 has never competed directly against the first-generation
>> B737.  (Similarly, the A321 is not a direct competitor of the
>> longer-range B757 even though the two designs have similar capacities.
>
>Point about CAPACITY well made. However, if one were to use operating costs as
>a metric to compare say a 757 vs A321, or 737 (first and medium generations)
>and A320, would your comparisons stick ?

The foremost criterion is to meet the mission requirements.  Thus, for an
operator with a need of a 180-seat plane for relatively long-haul
operations, the operating costs of the A321 is irrelevant because only the
B757 can meet the needs.

>Would it be possible that for some operators, dues to the negotiated deals,
>that operating a A320 would end up being more cost effective than a 1 or 2
>generation 737 even though the 737 might be beter sized for the airline's
>capacity requirements ?

Obviously, what you have in mind is Air Canada's selection of the A320
that you cited in an r.t.a post.  As I said in r.t.a, if a manufacturer
whose new product is not more efficient than the existing products, the
manufacturer will not have anything credible to market.  This applies to
both Boeing and Airbus!  When an airline announces a new order, it is to
their interest to say what's positive about the new aircraft that they
have selected.  For example, both Airbus and Cathay Pacific emphasized
the advantage of cross-crew qualification (CCQ) when CX ordered the A340
in addition to the A330.  However, when Singapore Airlines was deciding
between the B777 and the A330, SQ chose the B777 even though they had a
large fleet of A340 on order.  For SQ, CCQ wasn't a factor, while the
slightly larger B777 was claimed to be an important factor.  The fact is
few aircraft types have overwhelmingly dominated their competitors.
Hence, both Airbus and Boeing are offering competitive products.  One
may be better in certain areas, while the other may be better in other
areas.