Boeing 787 - increased range, increased cappacity and more orders

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Boeing says new 787 can fit more passengers

SEATTLE Good news for airlines: Boeing's new 7-87 jetliners will be able to squeeze in a few more passengers than the Chicago-based company had previously expected. Boeing said today the use of composite materials will allow it to fit slightly more room into the cabin of the airplane, which is scheduled to enter service in 2008.

Marty Bentrott -- vice president of sales and marketing with Boeing's 7-87 program -- says the company also updated its seat counts in part to reassure airlines that they can pack in more paying customers.

The company also said that its 7-87-nine will have a maximum range of more than 550 miles farther than previously estimated, because of improvements in the engines.

Boeing has 233 firm orders for the new airplane, a jet that promises to be quieter and more fuel-efficient than current models.

Orders for new Boeing jetliner climb

Boeing Co. says the number of orders for its 787 Dreamliner total 309, up from the 293 orders it had on the books a month ago.

That's according to a Boeing report released Thursday on its 787 progress update meeting held earlier this week in Seattle.

Boeing (NYSE: BA) says the Progress Summit III was attended by representatives from 140 airlines, financial institutions and supplier partners.

At the summit the company discussed progress on the testing of key components, technology developments and construction of facilities for manufacturing the new airplane.

The company announced it had also determined firm ranges and passenger capacity for each of the 787 models: 8,600-8,800 nautical miles and 250-290 passengers for the 787-9; 8,000-8,500 nautical miles and 210-250 passengers for the 787-8; and 3,000-3,500 nautical miles and 290-330 passengers for the 787-3.

In Wichita, Spirit AeroSystems Inc. will manufacture the forward section of the composite fuselage jetliner.

Customers for the airplane, ranging from domestic and international airlines to aircraft leasing companies, total 25.

"We are extremely pleased with the depth and breadth of the customers who have joined our launch team," says Marty Bentrott, Boeing 787 vice president of sales, marketing and in-service support.


Airbus-Boeing dogfight for orders moves to Hong Kong

THE pitched battle between Airbus and Boeing for orders from Australasia's high-flying airlines has moved from Australia to Hong Kong, host to a major industry conference.

Airbus and Boeing executives are targeting the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines annual meeting, hosted by Cathay Pacific Airways.

The AAPA represents 17 of the world most profitable airlines, many of which are about to embark on a Christmas buying spree.

For the 2004-05 year the AAPA members made a net profit of $US3.5 billion ($4.8 billion) on revenues of $US65.5 billion according to the combined annual report released yesterday.

This outstanding result came despite a 38 per cent increase in fuel costs.

Giving the airline chief executives confidence is the travelling public's acceptance of the fuel levies, and booming traffic.

Passenger traffic was up 28 per cent to 262.9 million and traffic expressed in revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) or passengers multiplied by distance travelled, was up 17.5 per cent to 621.9 billion.

This represents 18 per cent of the total world traffic and is music to the ears of Boeing and Airbus as they tout the virtues of their respective product lines.

Qantas was the target earlier this week, with Airbus taking line honours as its 500-seat A380 grabbed the headlines.

But Boeing bounced back late on Tuesday to launch its much-awaited 450-seat 747-800 Intercontinental, which features engines from the 787 and a radical makeover of the interior.

Boeing claims its new 747 will be even quieter than the A380 and it also suggests that even airline accountants will be more muted because the 747-800 has 22 per cent lower trip costs and slightly better seat mile costs than the A380.

So far this year Boeing has sold, net of cancellations, 39 747-400s and 747-800s.

While Airbus rightly claims the A380 will be more spacious, Boeing's pitch will be that its 747-800 will be more intimate with an exclusive first class in the nose and the popular upper deck business class, the fastest-selling premium seats in the sky.

Both Qantas and Singapore Airlines are expected to order more A380s or new 747-800s, with industry analysts suggesting that at least Singapore Airlines will buy the 747-800 and 747-800 freighters in December.

However, it is the mid-size jets that will take the lion's share of the orders from AAPA members.

Singapore Airlines is evaluating a host of options from 230-seat jets to more A380s and will announce its order in mid-December, while Cathay Pacific is evaluating 350-seat jets and is also thought to be close to ordering.

The main item on Qantas's Christmas shopping list is up to 50 Boeing 787s or A350s jets seating between 230 and 290 passengers, with the battle between Airbus and Boeing too close to call after a late charge by Airbus.

Six AAPA members - Korean, Japan Air Lines, Air New Zealand, Garuda, Vietnam Airlines and All Nippon - have ordered the 787.

While the AAPA annual meeting is the focus late this week, the spotlight will move to Dubai on Sunday for the start of the Dubai Air Show where industry giant Emirates is expected to order at least 50 more 777s and possibly some A350s. Orders are also expected from Qatar Airlines.

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DELTA AIR LINES: Purchase of Boeing or Airbus planes studied to replace 767s

Delta Air Lines Inc. is considering the purchase of Boeing Co.'s 787 Dreamliner or Airbus SAS' A350 airliners to replace less-fuel-efficient Boeing 767s in its fleet.

"We are in the early stages of making comparisons in this aircraft category, including the A350," Ed Lohr, Delta's director of network and fleet strategy, said Thursday on a conference call sponsored by Chicago-based Boeing. "The Boeing airplane is impressive and has greater detail as to what it really is, but we will know more in the coming year."

Delta was one of about 100 airlines and aircraft financiers in Seattle to review progress on the Dreamliner, which will enter service in 2008.

Airbus approved production of the A350 in October as an alternative to the Dreamliner. It is scheduled to enter service in 2010.

Delta, which filed for bankruptcy protection in September, last ordered jets from Boeing in 1997 and has 50 737s and 5 777-200ERs on order, according to Boeing's Web site.

Boeing said at the conference that the use of composite materials will allow airlines to fit more passengers into the Dreamliner.

The smallest version of the 787 will be able to carry between 210 and 250 passengers, up from 223. Another version could carry as many as 330, up from 296. A third version could carry as many as 290, up from 259.

The 787 has a list price of $125 million to $135 million and is sold out for the first three years.

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Can I remind you to properly credit the source when you are quoting copyrighted material?

Thank You


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Great news for the 787.