Airbus orders leave Boeing behind

IN another transatlantic battle Airbus has flown ahead of its US rival Boeing in aircraft orders for 2010.

Out of a gross order book comprising 625 commercial aircraft Boeing delivered 462, a figure in line with its forecast for last year.

Airbus on the other hand saw its order book reach 644 with a delivery figure of 510, almost 50 ahead of Boeing.

On the freight side, in 2010 Airbus recorded four additional orders for the A330-200F, bringing the total number of orders to date for the A330-200F to 66, Airbus tells Air Cargo News.

While cargo traffic jumped nearly 20 per cent in 2010, and airlines collected higher ticket prices Boeing could not match Airbus’ new record.

The US-based manufacturer’s delivery schedule took a further knock with a November fire during a 787 test flight adding to the three-year delay. The first delivery of its new jumbo cargo aircraft, the 747-8 Freighter, which also has seen a number of delays, is now set for the middle of this year.

Airbus and Boeing are spreading their wings following a turbulent 2009. Airbus has increased its production output for the ninth year in a row and during 2010 Boeing announced a series of production rate increases to meet increasing aircraft demand from carriers worldwide.

The Next-Generation 737 production rate will grow to 35 per month in early 2012 and 38 per month the second quarter of 2013. The 777 production rate will rise from five to seven per month in mid-2011 and grow to just over eight per month in the first quarter of 2013.

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