Friday, June 13, 2014

Airbus Discusses Fixing Its Swagger, As Boeing Just Tied Airbus Shoe Laces Together

Airbus is in Conference this week sorting out what happened these last five years. Of course everything Airbus did was right and on the mark when considering what Boeing did. Not only are its rose colored glasses picking up additional enlightenment's, they are bold to speak half-truths as it were a literary license to do so list.

Half Truth List from the past to the future from Airbus, my insights added:

  • In 2003 Airbus remarked, the newly announce 787 project would fail and shouldn't be tried.
  • Two years later it announced it would build a better XWB A350 greater than the 787.
  • Incremental technology is better than all new technology slide, meeting starts.
  • NEO code naming is synonymous with incremental advancement.
  • Baghdad Bob Announces, Airbus is slaughtering the the MAX with A320 Neo orders at a 6:4 ratio over the Max.
  • John Leahy sitting next to Baghdad Bob announces, "(The Airbus Chief Operating Officer Customers, John Leahy, calls it) A period of panic for Boeing, as Airbus moves its largest single aisle model, the A321, into the territory occupied by aged 757s which Boeing no longer makes by exploiting the things new tech engines make possible in a 240 passenger single aisle jet."
  • Someone remarked, "isn't that what the 787-8 does", they were escorted out
  • Airbus CEO Fabrice BrĂ©gier made it clear: Incremental, Incremental, quiet please.
  • A Hand went up as a calculator turned off. How many Max have sold verses A320 Neo since the time the Max was announced? Then the meeting speaker got annoyed, "more space is now available for those still standing." (Door in the back slams).
  • CEO Bregier continues, BrĂ©gier’s strategic direction means that the next big step, or NBS when it comes to the lucrative single aisle airliner market will be sometime around 2030, rather than now, in 2014, as just about everyone in Airbus and Boeing was predicting in 2004.
  • Its John Leahy's turn, he has a slide show of how panicked Boeing is, in Everett,WA
  • Fabregier talks about the Next Big Step (NBS), The A330-NEO-NBS-XWB.
  • "What About Bob (AKA Bill Murray)" Comes up to the Microphone. Incremental is all about "Baby Steps". Applause and then ovation. Dr. Leo Marvin (AKA Richard Dryfuss) screams.
  • Symposium Brain storming next; let’s all write down ideas on the NEO with everything we've got.
  • Does that include the A380? Yes it does!
  • Can we go Neo on the A350-800? No you can't!
  • Do Airbus Gliders qualify? Yes they do, even though no New Engine Option is available.
  • Has everybody Brain Stormed their Baby Steps Incremental Dream Plane? (oops)
  • Announcer, "We now have one more chair up front for those still standing."
From Game Changer To Difference Maker

Even though Boeing did a quantum leap in technology verses the Airbus mantra of Baby Steps, Boeing will have perfected its family of aircraft feeding off that quantum leap over the next 25 years. The 777X, 747-8i and The Max all benefit from Boeing's technological leap with the 787. The 787 is the root cause of Boeing's future success in anything it does until 2030 or there about. Airbus does not have a 787 playbook to feed from. They have a menagerie of NEO's, XWB, and giant aircraft, which adds to its well spring of advancements for the future. Baby steps will put Airbus further behind in this case.

Announcement: The A330 Neo is doing a competitive airplane build on the cheap in baby steps (no applause). 

Airbus cannot draw from a 787 technology parts bin. The A350 did not break significant ground in technology other than a plastic frame and wings. Many unique and one-off new technologies are found in the 787 development, and is showing up in Boeing's new airplane portfolio, or already is flying, and also is making a differences through its family of aircraft.

The 787 is a difference maker for the complete Boeing family. Developing the A350 by Airbus does not make a significant difference for all follow-on NEO planes. Airbus laid up short with its technology on the A350. They didn't match or catch Boeing's 787 technological inspiration. A customer and journalist recently rode on the A350-900 test plane during a promotional flight for the press.

This journalist remarked in his article, how noisy the A350 was compared to the 787-8 he had flown in on. The interior was not that remarkable, but had the latest in seat innovation just like any other airline. Missing were the engineering touches that Boeing has, those wings sweeping back, Window innovations, and a quieter ride. These types of observations were interrupted by 150 other seated press from Europe and the Airbus embedded journalist. He thought this was kind of cheesy when all clapped after the A350 took off, and then cheered when it landed. No objectivity was given by anyone that this journalist could see. He just felt he had a better ride and quieter experience on the 787 when considering all its systems in play. 


Boeing has the game changer and the difference maker for its family of aircraft, where Boeing is also taking incremental steps forward in all sizes. It has positioned itself for the customer and airline operations. The 10 years of new technology R&D was not just for the 787, it was for all of its commercial aviation divisions of aircraft. Every aircraft from the smallest to the largest contains 787 engineering DNA under its skin, whether it is metal or plastic. The 777X program will validate this statement.

On the other hand, Airbus went on the hurry up route, and dumbed down the A350, which is not a good comparison for Airbus against 787 technology. The A350 is also, a well to draw from, when taking additional steps in Building NEO's for all types. These NEO's will have to depend on engine makers outside the company for making old technology fly better. Airbus does not have an inside game with its own technology like Boeing. They will try and win with Engine builders, the same ones Boeing also uses.  When you look at the Airbus situation, it looks disjointed, unorganized and hap-hazard. Airbus lacks a Game Changer and Difference Maker.

Airbus “Snickies” List:
  • Considering a remake of a 20 year old plane, A330 NEO as the primary 787-8 fighter (haphazard)
  • Failing with A350-800 and abandoning its development. (unorganized) 
  • Discussing a NEO program for the A380 since sales have hit bottom. (knee jerk)
  • Considering the A321 NEO as a competitor of the discontinued 757.  (disjointed)
  • Tasking the A350-900 and A350-1000 to compete with the following (are you kidding me): Airbus must be delusional?

Boeing Bottom Line:
  • 787-8
  • 787-9
  • 787-10
  • 777-8X
  • 777-9X