Airbus cuts superjumbo A380 production again

  • 27 July 2017
  • From the section Business

An Airbus A380 taking off on its first test flightImage copyright
Airbus

European aircraft maker Airbus has cut production of its A380 superjumbo for the second time in a year.

Deliveries of the double-decker will now fall from 15 this year to 12 in 2018 and eight in 2019, Airbus said.

Chief Executive Tom Enders said that prospects of further sales of the A380 in the short-term were not “necessarily high”.

Airbus, which has not had an A380 order for two years, makes the wings at its factory at Broughton, north Wales.

The company said on Thursdays that production of the A380 continued to operate at a marginal loss.

In June, Airbus unveiled an upgraded version of the world’s largest passenger jet, promising greater fuel efficiency and room for more seats. Airbus hopes it will be the catalyst for more orders from airlines.

Also on Thursday, Airbus posted second-quarter operating profits which fell 27% to 859m euros (£765m) on revenues of 15.27bn euros.

That fell short of the 910m euro profit expected by analysts polled by Reuters.

On Wednesday, shares in rival Boeing hit a record high after its second-quarter profit and cashflow came in well ahead of Wall Street estimates.

Production at Airbus has been hit by delays in delivery of US engine-maker Pratt & Whitney’s engines for the A320neo aircraft.

The fuel-saving Geared Turbofan engine has suffered reliability problems. On Thursday, Airbus chief executive Tom Enders said Pratt & Whitney had to “work harder” to fix the problems.

“It should be a winning engine but they need to fix it,” he told reporters. “Pratt & Whitney has introduced some fixes but we are still waiting for these improvements to come through.”

He also said that Airbus was in “constructive talks” with Qatar Airways over a recent cancellation of four A350 aircraft, adding, “I think we will find a way out” of the issue.

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