Boeing had a press release yesterday announcing the first B737MAX is now in the final assembly. First flight is expected in early 2016. Bjorn writes here about the timing of of the new or and (he is not right on one thing though: the first flight of the A320neo was NOT late by 6 months).What becomes clear (well, as of now...) is that the B737MAX will enter Airline Service earlier than previously thought. This is also backed from Alaska Airlines, which expects the first B737MAX-8 now in late 2017 rather in early 2018.
There is always a lot of "discussion" between Airbus and Boeing about the market share of the A320neo vs. the B737MAX. Airbus maintains to argue that the A320neo has a market share of 60% where Boeing also consistently says that in the long run market shares will be more or less equal.
I always consistent that as long as the A320neo enters service it would be logical that the A320neo would have more orders than the B737MAX with the numbers of more deliveries until both aircraft are in full production. By that both are (theoretically) able to compete in new campaigns with delivery slots in the same timeframe.
So let us assume that the B737MAX will have it's first delivery around 1.5 years after the A320neo. If we assume that both Airbus and Boeing ramp up the A320neo and the B737MAX at the same pace and that both manufacturers will produce at the same monthly rate (which is not exactly true, but a simplification for now), Airbus will have delivered 1.5 years of A320neo production more than Boeing. At a rate of 52 aircraft a month (the target rate for the B737MAX) this means a difference of 936 aircraft.
Now let's have a look at the difference in the backlog over time:
December 31, 2012: A320neo: 1764 B737MAX: 1064
December 31, 2013: A320neo: 2610 B737MAX: 1766
December 31, 2014: A320neo: 3621 B737MAX: 2657
September 16, 2015: A320neo: 4303 B737MAX: 2863