Re: Best Sellers

Date:         03 Mar 98 03:12:54 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
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>What are the best selling commercial airliners? Based on a few random facts
>and a lot of guess work, I'd guess they come out something like this:
>  1. Boeing 737
>  2. McDonnell-Douglas DC-9/MD-80/MD-90/Boeing 717-200
>  3. Boeing 727
>  4. Boeing 747
>  5. Airbus A320/A319/A321
>After that, I have no idea where to go. 707? A300? DC-10?

Close, except the 707 is still ahead of the A320/319/321 for now, and as
you note the DC-3 is greater than Boeing's entire 707 thru 777 production
if you include the C-47.  There probably are some Russian types which
are well up the list, too.

Here's the ranking for 100+ seat Western commercial jetliners, with
production totals (estimated deliveries to date for types which are
still in roduction):

   1. 737		3000+
   2. DC-9/MD-80/MD-90  2210+
   3. 727		1832
   4. 747		1140+
   5. 707/720		1010  (see note)
   6. A320/319/321	 800+
      757		 800+
   8. A300/310		 790+
   9. 767		 690+
  10. A330/340		 200+
  11. DC-10/KC-10/MD-11	 620+ (446 DC-10/KC-10)
  12. F-28/70/100	~590
  13. DC-8		 556
  14. L-1011		 250
  15. 777		 110+

The 707 count also includes various military 707 derivatives, but not
the KC-135 series (of which 820 were built).  You may occasionally see
the 707 production total reported as 1012; line numbers went this high
but two planes were assigned two different line numbers.

A few months ago, the 757 was ahead of the A320/319/321.  It's too close
to call right now, but within a few months the little Airbus family
should have a solid lead on the 757.  Both have probably already passed
the A300/320.

>This includes regional aircraft, too (Saab 340 is No.1 in that
>category, I think, followed by either the ATR or Dash-8).

I have no idea where the regionals would fit into this picture.

>Also, how do these numbers compare to some not-so-modern aircraft? I know
>Douglas made something like 12,000 DC-3s, but most of these went to the
>armed forces, though many returned to airline service.

The military DC-3 was the C-47 Dakota.  417 DC-3s were built before the
start of World War II.  After the start of hostilities, at least 194 of
these were pressed into military service and another 10,238 C-47s were
built.  I doubt any further civilian DC-3s were built since thousands of
C-47s became surplus after the war and were converted to airliners and
sold to many airlines.

Here are a few other propliner totals:

      DC-4		 140  (61 pre-war, 79 post-war, excludes C-54s)
      DC-6		 537
      DC-7		 336

      L-049/C-69	  88
      L-649/L-749	 133
      L-1049		 250  (excluding military versions)
      L-1649		  43

      307		   9  (Stratoliner)
      377		  56  (Stratocruiser)

      CV-240		 176
      CV-340		 212

      2-0-2		  31
      4-0-4		 103

Karl Swartz	|Home
"The average dog is a nicer person than the average person." - Andrew A. Rooney