Woes continue for Boeing in the new year, as it received no new orders for any aircraft in January 2020. This makes it the worst start of the year for Boeing in a whopping 58 years (since January 1962)! Beginning of the year is usually a slow start for aircraft manufacturers as airlines tend to back-load their orders in the previous year. However, Airbus still managed to pick up almost 250 orders in January, while Boeing failed to make any advancement. There are two factors that help explain Boeing’s shortfall, namely:
- Most of the market is demanding efficient single aisle medium haul aircraft, which means the A321neo and A321XLR is having the lion’s share
- The terrible state of wide body aircraft market, which actually is Boeing’s strength
Even though Boeing delivered 8 commercial aircraft in January – including 6 787s and 2 777s, it remained in the shadow of Airbus, which delivered 31 commercial aircraft. Moreover, Boeing cut their delegations to Singapore Airshow, which is Asia’s largest airshow – Coronavirus being the spoilsport. Airshows boost sales tremendously, and the Singapore Airshow debacle definitely is a contributing factor for Boeing’s blank slate.
Boeing’s order-book issues are only compounded by the ongoing 737MAX crisis, however, even if the aircraft was in perfect condition, experts suggest that not much would had changed. The 737MAX operates in the 150-200 seat range, however, the A321neo family of aircraft holds well more than 200 passengers. According to Richard Aboulafia, aviation analyst at Teal Group, the 150 seat market is just not as strong and demanding as the 200 to 250 seat market, which is hugely dominated by the A321neo and A321XLR aircraft. With recent reports suggesting that Boeing has scrapped the NMA for now, the A321neo and A321XLR will dominate the medium-haul market in the long run.
Boeing 737MAX aircraft parked at Boeing Field, Seattle. Image Credits: HindustanTimes
What Boeing needs now is to get the 737MAX ready as early as possible. The 737 has always been the heart of Boeing, and after a year of its grounding, Boeing is indeed bleeding.
What do you think of the current crisis at Boeing, and what can possibly be the solution to this? Let us know in the comments!