Qantas Cancels Remaining A380 Deliveries

17th Aug 2016

Chief Executive Officer at Qantas, Alan Joyce, said this week that the flag carrier of Australia sees no market in which it could use the remaining eight Airbus A380s that it was supposed to receive. This way, Qantas has effectively dropped the remaining A380 deliveries.

Qantas CEO said:

"There's a network for 12 [the airline currently has in service] that's very good and works very well, but the airline "struggles with a network for the next eight."

Initially, Qantas and Airbus made a deal for a total order of 20 A380 models. However, in 2012, the Australian national carrier delayed the order to preserve cash and did so again in 2014.

Despite the deal with Qantas not coming to fruition, Airbus Chief Executive Officer Fabrice Bregier said he remains positive regarding A380s future and that he is "convinced the aircraft will find its way".

Between 2012 and 2014, Airbus saw a total of 30 deliveries, which was the most since 2007. This year, if the prediction by the Global's Fleet Analyzer is correct, the French plane manufacturer could deliver between 25 and 30 aircraft to different airline companies. The trend will, according to GFA then take a drop and Airbus will see another 20 to 25 planes delivered in 2017 and between 10 and 15 in the year after that.

According to Rob Morris, chief at Flight Ascent Consultancy, Airbus has to deal with the strong market in the wide body sector. Mr Morris said:

"The A380's economics are competitive with the current Boeing 777-300ER, but the 777-9 resets the equilibrium and the A380 as designed today is threatened."

He also added:

"The challenge for Airbus today is to maintain the aircraft in production for several more years while developing a next-generation A380 which can apply new engine, materials, systems and aerodynamic technologies to reset the economic equilibrium in its favour."

Morris concluded:

"If this is towards the middle of the next decade it will also likely see more increased demand for A380-sized aircraft. But maintaining profitability at one a month with a declining and increasingly concentrated backlog will be a not-insignificant challenge."