Monday, November 13, 2017

Does The Dubai Forty Mean Something?

Emirates placed an order for 40 787-10's at the Dubai airshow. Another clue came forward recently from a remark about the 787-10's testing suggesting Emirates is fond of its flexibility.

Quote from the Charleston Regional Business Journal:

“Emirates has displayed immense confidence in the South Carolina-built 787-10s and has seen the maturation of the airplane during testing as well,” said Saj Ahmad, chief analyst with StrategicAero Research, in an email. “Coupled with Boeing’s rate hike to 14 airplanes a month, this is not the only sizeable 787 [order] we’ll see. There are others almost certainly ready to be revealed if they aren’t in the bag already.”

This brief comment suggests Emirates was walking hand in hand with Boeing during early validation tests on the 787-10. One question must of have been answered during the Emirates participation observing 787-10 testing. This model can stand the desert heat and deliver flying efficiency beyond what its competitor can do.

A second clue from the above quote indicates the 787-10's remarkable flexibility for long haul flights not formerly indicated by Boeing's own publications. The 787-10 has outperformed Boeing's own estimations documented before air frame testing was conducted. It is capable of longer distances than first reported. The 787-10 doesn't have to go beyond 7,000 miles, it just has to go where its potential customers travel. The Emirates business philosophy is right sizing capability within a family of aircraft which Airbus lacks. 

There is no A-350-800 it’s a paper airplane. The A-350-900 is a one trick pony and has more capability than needed, so it hauls that unused capability everywhere while only meeting maximum efficiency 10% of the time. The A-350-1000 steadily loses ground or has a stagnate order book since many airlines cannot find a slot within its business footprint. The 777X is a common ally to all of Boeing's other aircraft. The A-350-1000 only has one friend, that in the A-350-900, making it a family of aircraft I guess.

Airbus is losing the WB end of the airplane spectrum rapidly because it cannot connect the dots from single aisle to the A-380. Boeing has completed several important goals where Airbus has failed to do so in response. A short list below describes the Airbus shortfalls causing customers coming back to Boeing in numbers.

·      Incomplete A-350 Family from Top to Bottom.
·      Inability to counter the 777X program
·      Cannot counter Boeing's mid-range high density 787-10 slot with any of its aircraft.
·      Boeing buried its 747 Jumbo, Airbus can't give up the A-380 before its Break-even point. 

The "Dubai forty" 787-10 is a serious red flag for Airbus. Even if Emirates does place an order for another 30 A-380’s it will have a hard time staying with the A-380 as competitors continue with the Boeing family of aircraft. It will become a one-off super Jumbo carrier. The other airlines will nip its heals around the jumbo fleet. 

However, Emirates realize its ill-fated tacking move with the A-380 and it made a new tack in 2013 by ordering 150 of Boeing’s 777-X’s. Coincidentally, 150 units is a similar to its 142 A-350 orders it has on the Airbus order book. The 787-10 fills an important slot along with the 777X that will in time replace all it’s a-380’s. The total wide body book for Boeing’s "new wide body" stands at 190 not counting the 777-300-ER backlog.

Emirates has to replace its older 777’s in the next ten years. A problem posed with Boeing’s marketing team. Some of the long range Boeing commitment to its customers has been made with this Dubai 40 order. Emirates will need more aircraft in its fleet to replace both the A-380 and its older 777’s. Another airshow another day is the answer for this dilemma. Emirates will need another 100 wide body order in five years. Probably a 50-50 split with the 777X and the 787 family. It just has to wait to see if the 787-10 and 777X works as advertised during testing. It appears the 787-10 has accomplished its goals.