Boeing and Airbus delivered 202 (78+66+58) and 148 (55+46+47) commercial jets in Q3 2017, respectively, compared to 188 and 164 during the same quarter last year. This year to date, Boeing has delivered 554 jets (563 at this time last year), while Airbus has delivered 454 (462 in 2016). In 2016, Boeing delivered 748 jets (762 in 2015) in line with company expectations, while Airbus surpassed its delivery target of 650 jets by handing over 688 jets during 2016 (635 in 2015).
In Q3 2017, Boeing delivered 145 737s (of which 26 were 737 MAX models), four 747-8s, two 767s, 16 777s (note: 777 rate reduced), and 35 787s. Boeing raised its 737 production rate to 47 per month in Q3 2017 from 42 previously, and plans to increase it further to 52 during 2018. Boeing’s CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, has announced that demand supports a further increase to 57 737s per month in 2019.
This year more than 50 737 MAX jets are expected to come off the production line in Renton, Washington. With 30 jets delivered to date and 14 in September alone, the company should easily be able to exceed that target. In September 2017, Boeing announced it will raise its 787 production rate to 14 per month during 2019, up from 12 today.
In Q3 2017, Airbus delivered 11 A320s, 14 A330s, 20 A350s, and three A380s. Airbus expects to deliver 80 A350s in 2017 (30 to go) and up to 120 A350s in 2018, when the production rate hits 10 per month. Airbus is considering a further increase up to 13 A350s per month in 2019. The ramp-up of A350 XWB deliveries combined with a higher A320 production rate of 46 per month (commenced Q2 2016) means that the company is narrowing the gap in the deliveries race and will likely surpass Boeing by 2019. By mid-2019, Airbus expects to be delivering 60 A320 jets per month.
In the orders race – following a solid Paris Air Show where Boeing came out as the winner with 571 net new orders and commitments ahead of Airbus’ 326 – both manufacturers had a weak third quarter. In Q3 2017, Boeing logged 127 gross orders (minus 10 cancellations, for a net of 117). Boeing’s Q3 orders included an order for 50 737 MAX narrowbodies from an unidentified customer (most likely Lion Air Group’s commitment for 737 MAX 10s announced at the Paris Air Show).
Also, on August 31, Boeing booked an order from the U.S. Air Force for two 747-8 jets for the Presidential Aircraft Replacement program to produce the next Air Force One. Boeing has landed 498 net new orders this year to date (548 gross orders), compared to 380 net new orders during the first nine months of 2016.
Airbus experienced a fairly severe order drought in Q3 2017 and only logged 68 net new orders (71 gross). Airbus’ largest order was from Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific for 32 A321neos, placed on September 19. Airbus has landed 271 net new orders this year to date (319 gross orders), compared to 380 net new orders during the first nine months of 2016.
With only Q4 remaining, Boeing is more than 100 aircraft ahead of last year’s Q1-Q3 order haul, while Airbus is over 100 orders short and needs a strong Q4 to avoid considerably “tapping” the backlog. (end of excerpt)
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