No clean sheet B757 / B767 succussor!

I refer to the story in herald.net reporting from the Boeing Investor Day on May, 21st 2014. Reading the article we must come to the conclusion that a clean sheet design B757/767 successor will not happen for some time.

After the financial B787 debacle, which is now between $23 and $25 billion in the reds and with a costly B777X program ahead nobody in the Boeing upper management will have the will to try to sell another technical and financial adventure to the shareholders.

One could say that Boeing now has all the learning about how to develop and produce a fiber carbon aircraft and the development of the B777X wing would give further experience and would lower the risk. But this aircraft – a B757/767 successor – would have different competitors, coming partly from Boeing itself. The B737MAX-9 and the A321neo from the lower side, the B787-8 and a A330neo from the upper side. Of course, the B737MAX-9 and the A321neo would not be able to do the critical B757 missions and the A330neo and the B787-8 are optimized for longer ranges and thus would not offer optimized costs for, say, a 4000nm mission. But this market segment alone, which can not be served by the B737MAX-9 and the A321neo, would be too small  to present a business case with another $10-$15 billion investment upfront.

Sales prices would also be a problem with a A330neo, which, with a 2018 EIS by 2025 could have written down development costs and could be given to customers for prices we see today for the baseline A330 (escalated by inflation, of course).

Boeing yesterday made clear (as Airbus did before) that future aircraft will (for the foreseeable future) only see incremental developments rather than revolutionary designs. The plans from Airbus for an electric regional aircraft might be the only exception, but we have to wait another few years to see if this concept will really become reality.

Is there a demand for a B757/B767 successor? Yes, of course! Will Boeing sell one aircraft less if they (and Airbus) don’t do it? No! And this is what counts for the shareholder. Period!


  1. The A321 is already taking much of the market, offering capabilities the 737-9 can't match. It is close to beating combined sales of 737-900, -900ER, -9, 757-200, -300, 767-200, -200ER of the last 35 years.


    Pratt now offers silent 35k lbs 81 inch fan GTF engines, a 10-20% wing enlargement might be underway.

    For now 190-240 seats medium range seems a done deal. Boeing probably concluded they were too late with too little and investments can better be made elsewhere in their portfolio.

  2. The train left the station when the 737 was MAX'ed. Boeing should have max'ed the 757 as well, two flies in one beat, ravishing the leadership vs NEO in high BPR/big fan cutting-edge technology. Boeing themselves should have taken the Motto seriously "It takes a 757 to replace a 757" ... Morale : never ditch the FAL of a good product, you never know if a later product come-back will make sense ... ?!

  3. Most likely scenario in the case of a stingy Boeing management is Airbus moving forward using the A320 as basis and giving it a 20-30% larger wing plus higher rated GTFs. The fuselage would be sufficient in terms of cross section for up to 300 PAX. Sort of aggressive low cost mid range model, disregard cargo and accept some issues with turnaround (which can be overcome if cleverly approached).