Re: end of the line for the MD-11

Date:         26 Jun 98 02:37:53 
From:         "Thomas A. Beckley" <beckley@sprintmail.com>
Organization: EarthLink Network, Inc.
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>> To the best of my knowledge total orders are 191. It is a pretty safe
>> bet to say that some of the customers will cancel their remaining
>> orders, since the value of the MD11 will take a deep drop. Why spend
>> money on sth that will be axed ?
>
>Well, ask TWA, who recently got Boeing to extend MD-80 production past the
>scheduled cutoff date so they could order some 20-odd additional aircraft.
>If the aircraft fits your needs and you'll be using them for some time, it may
>well make sense to order a couple extra. I wouldn't be surprised to see that
>happening in this case. eg Lufthansa might still take up their options, and
>Finnair might take on a few more. Since FedEx had proven itself willing to
>scoop up just about any Douglas trijet that comes on the market, resale
>values haven't taken that much of a dive.

Did TWA's buy extend the life of the MD-80 production line?  How many are
left to be delivered?  Boeing recently announced that the production rate of
the MD-80/-90 production line will be 3 planes a month for the forseeable
future, so if we know how many remain to be delivered it should be easy to
figure out how long they need to keep the line open at this rate.

Looking at three Boeing press releases, the numbers just don't seem to add
up.  When the discontinuation of the line was announced at the beginning of
November, there were 13 unfilled MD-80 orders and 91 unfilled MD-90 orders
and the production rate was four a month.  That means that there were a
total of 104 unfilled orders, and at 4 a month it would take 26 months, or
until approximately the end of 1999.  In the news release they said they
expected the line to wrap up in mid-1999, so this is about right, especially
if the 20 Chinese MD-90's were included in the total orders and not the
total production rate.

TWA ordered their additional 24 MD-80's in April, and that news release just
says that it was announced in November that production would be phased out
when current committments are met.  This would seem to contradict the new
order, since the new order was not a current committment at the time ...

When Boeing announced discontinuation of the MD-11 in early June, the same
news release also mentioned the discontinuation of the MD-80 line and said
production would be complete in January 2000.

When Boeing announced production rates for 1999, they announced that 3
planes would be delivered a month for the next year.  This would seem to
extend the life of the line, especially considering the additional order of
24 by TWA.  These additional orders as well as the existing ones would
certainly seem to require more time than January 2000 to complete.

The real question is, how many more MD-80/-90 aircraft are there to be
delivered?  I can't seem to find a straight answer for this on the Boeing
website, but maybe I just missed it ...