Airbus A380: White Elephant WAY Overdue
Shares of Airbus' parent company EADS crashed today, as Airbus announced a new, seven month, production delay of their superjumbo jet, the 840 passenger A380.
Singapore Airlines, which had been scheduled to take the first of the A380s this year, is sick of the delays, and stuck a dagger in Airbus' heart by agreeing to buy 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
The delays are only part of Airbus' problem with the A380. I think that the entire concept of the plane is a mistake. Do you want to fly in a plane that has 839 other people in it? I don't. I don't think that too many others do either.
This monster-plane makes sense if people are going to primarily fly to from one hub airport to another, ie going from England to the UK by means of Heathrow and JFK Airports. But if you're going from New York to Edinburgh, why go through Heathrow when you can fly Continental Airlines nonstop to Edinburgh? They have two of those flights to Edinburgh now, and they're making a fortune on them. They also fly nonstop from New York to Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, and Glasgow, as well as London. They cover the NYC-UK route, better than British Airways does ; they cover NYC-Ireland ( nonstop to Dublin, Shannon and Belfast ) better than Aer Lingus.
But British Airways can serve the massive London trade to the US better than anyone. They'll take you from London nonstop to all kinds of places in the US without a stop. And so it goes worldwide. There's all kinds of service from smaller cities in one country to hub cities in a second country.
Point to point also means you and your luggage board one plane one time, and go through security one time only.
So, if this is the direction that the airlines are moving to, what the hell do we need a 840 seat plane based on the model of hub-hub travel that is unraveling every day? The hub to hub model will fall apart even more as very long distance aircraft become more common. The latest 787 model will go New York-New Zealand and Sydney-London nonstop.
Airbus bet the farm on a plane that the world doesn't want and doesn't need. The A380 is like the Concorde, an aviation curiosity that everyone will lose money on-airlines, airports, Airbus itself. But not me. Your friendly Phantom owns a few shares of Boeing stock. So, on behalf of all the Boeing shareholders, I say to Airbus, THANK YOU for coming out with this white elephant!! Stay the course, Noël Forgeard!!