Tue, Jul 10, 2012
ALC 737 MAX Order May Be Just The Start
The announcement by Boeing that Air Lease Corp is ordering 75 737 MAX airplanes may be the beginning of a shift on the order-book leader board between Boeing and Airbus ... with Boeing moving to claim the top spot.
The Wall Street Journal reports that several other companies are in talks with the U.S. planemaker and may have announcement as the Farnborough Air Show progresses this week. Those could include an announcement that United Continental Holdings is confirming an order for 100 or the re-engined single-aisle airplanes, with options for another 100. Another possible deal with A Kuwait-based leasing company is reportedly in the works, but may not be finished in time for an announcement at Farnborough.
That doesn't mean Airbus is sitting idly by while Boeing racks up orders. The European planemaker says it is nearing completion on deals that could double its order book this year. Announcement at Farnborough may be forthcoming, according to sources close to the negotiations.
Reuters reports that both planemakers are offering deep discounts on their narrow-body jets in an effort to ring up sales. Boeing CEO Jim Mcnerney predicted that sales of the 737 MAX will beat the A320neo for "a number of years" after having had to look up to see Airbus for nearly a decade.
GE Aviation president David Joyce said that while Boeing might win the Farnborough order-book competition this year, there would be fewer orders announced overall. Still, he called the outlook "very positive" based on the production rates of airplanes and order books he described as "full."
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