Airbus A380's new delivery schedule

DUBAI — Emirates airline, the biggest customer for Airbus's A380, said it has yet to determine how the new delivery schedule of the world's largest passenger plane would affect it in 2009.

By Issac John (Deputy Business Editor)

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Published: Wed 14 May 2008, 9:14 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 1:34 PM

An Emirates spokesperson told Khaleej Times that the largest Arab carrier expects to receive all five A380s in its current financial year ending 31, 2009 as scheduled. So the new Airbus delivery setback would not impact the planes that the Dubai-based carrier is going to receive this year.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad, which has on order four A380s, said it also would not be impacted by the revised delivery schedule. "We are aware of the situation and are in constant dialogue with Airbus," said Leo Seaton, Head of Media Relations of Etihad. "As we expect the delivery of our four aircraft in 2013, we hope the new delay would not affect our expansion programme," Seaton said.

Emirates, with 58 superjumbos on order, is expected to receive five aircraft by March 2009. According to the revised delivery plan, Airbus plans now for 12 (instead of 13) deliveries in 2008 and 21 (instead of 25) in 2009.

"We are in dialogue with Airbus to determine the impact on our A380 deliveries in 2009. We have no specific dates or details at this time," the Emirates spokesperson said. On compensation claims in the wake of the new delay which the European plane-maker notified, he said it was too early to discuss the issue.

Airbus has delayed delivery of the A380 three times so far, causing its delivery schedule to fall almost two years behind after a series of industrial mishaps since 2005. Emirates has received Dh404 million during the year to March 31 in "liquidating damages" from Airbus for late delivery of its A380s.

In a statement emailed to Khaleej Times, Airbus said it has completed the A380 programme review and is now informing customers about changes to its delivery schedule. The review assessed the programme status at the critical juncture of transitioning from low rate "individual" production, so-called Wave 1, to the full serial design and manufacturing process, called Wave 2.

"Overall, the recovery programme, initiated in summer 2006, is progressing well. Four aircraft were delivered as planned and are performing very well in airline operations on long-range routes. Seventeen aircraft are in various stages of production, mainly in the wiring installation

and system testing phases. Most aircraft earmarked for delivery in 2008 have already flown."

The European plane-maker said the review has also shown that the steep ramp-up planned in 2006 is not fully achievable. "Time and resources needed for Wave 1 production aircraft are higher than expected, and this has created some delay in the changeover to Wave 2 with its new design and manufacturing process. Details about the new plan and the further ramp-up and delivery slots in 2010 and the following years will be discussed with customers in the coming weeks."

Airbus said the results of this review do not, at this stage, cover the financial impact. "The extent of the additional costs will be influenced by the actual production and delivery scenario. This will follow discussions with the customers and a more precise evaluation of the implications of the new delivery schedule for 2010 deliveries and beyond. This will therefore take some more time to determine."

Emirates expects to receive four A380s this year, one before the end of March, 2009.

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