Last month I wrote a short entry about Ryanair's Michael O'Leary and what his thoughts are about the B737MAX. Well, when he talks about aircraft, it barely has to do with physics and what the aircraft can or can not do - it always has more to do with the price for his next deal...
But when the "Godfather of Aircraft Leasing", Steven Udvar-Hazy
talks about an aircraft, the particular aircraft OEM should better listen. Think about the ISTAT meeting in 2006, where SUH urged Airbus to rework their plans for the A350 family: the outcome is well known - it is the A350XWB.
So when he now talks about the B737MAX being "not a long-term solution" and recommending Boeing to offer a second engine, namely the PW1000G, there will be many in the aerospace community who will listen carefully - because he as a lessor is always concerned about the residual value of an aircraft and in the end the expectation about the residual value of an aircraft will be one of the deciding factors if it will be a success. of course it is important for an aircraft to have good economics - for the airline. But the owner of the aircraft (usually not being the airline which is operating the aircraft) is more interested in the residual value. Good economics will help to get a decent residual value, but there is more to it. If for example the B737MAX would only be produced from the end of 2017 until 2025 before an all-new successor-aircraft will be on the market, the customer base could be too small to remarket an aircraft that is coming off-lease.
So if a second engine could help to make the B737MAX more attractive to customers, be it through better economics or through getting better deals when buying/leasing the aircraft as there is more competition, that could help getting the B737MAX a longer production run.
Steven Udvar-Hazy is not very optimistic though that Boeing will follow his advice. But well , you never know - in 2006 Airbus first dismissed Hazy's comments about the A350 just to relaunch it as the A350XWB at the Farnborough Airshow.