Further A320 rate hikes needed!

Just a week after – unsurprisingly – announcing a further rate increase for the A320, John Leahy yesterday at the ISATAT Americas talked about further increasing production and potentially announcing this until the end of the year.
Given the current backlog of the A320ceo the rate increase perfectly makes sense –
needless to say so for the A320neo backlog.
Now what does the rate hike announced last week mean for the A320ceo backlog? I will make a projection based on my last post about this subject.
With the rate increase to 50 aircraft per month starting in the first quarter of 2017 the backlog of the A320ceo will not be cleared until the end of 2018. Airbus previously said that until the end of 2018 the A320neo should reach 100% of A320 production.
There would be about 160 A320ceo still be in the backlog.

Now have a look what would happen if Airbus would raise production to 63 aircraft a month by late 2018, a rate that was mentioned to be studied by Boeing, although for a later date.
The A320ceo backlog would be cleared by the end of 2018. I don’t think it is possible to ramp up production that fast – the bottleneck is probably not the final assembly of the aircraft, but some of the suppliers, most prominently probably the engine manufacturers. So I don’t think we will see a rate of somewhere near 60 in 2018, but if nothing dramatically (bad) happens to the world economy, Airbus has to plan to rate hikes as fast as possible (and the same is probably true for Boeing with regards to the B737MAX). I guess at least by 2020 we could see rates like this at both large airframers. What is the alternative? Leaving customers without aircraft they want – or customers “defecting” to Bombardier or (later) Embraer.


  1. I would like to know about the difference between the 2 engines for de A320. Is the CFM product ready to fly? Does it prove to be within a few % difference to GTF, or perhaps better?
    How is the certification campaign going for both models?
    And what aboout the 737 max? Is it in the assembly line?

    1. If the LEAP-1A is ready to fly only CFM knows (or maybe Airbus). The first parts for the B737MAX started production on October 2014. I don't think that the first aircraft will be in final assembly before the end of the year though...

  2. With the near-term emergence of BBD, COMAC and Irkut in the cross-hairs Airbus and Boeing converge into a typical BCG-defensive strategy (Boston Consulting Group), cornering the market from the throughput angle, which again (considering NRD&D costs are by now fully amortized) permit undercutting the offerings of the new entrants, from quantity rebates or mere deep-discounting. We're witnessing a practical Lecture in modern Retail Psychology, offensive merchandising and tactical Marketing war. You can't blame A or B, they are doing the right thing ?!

  3. Many CEO will be converted to NEO's. Mostly by airlines that have both CEO's and NEO's in the order book.

  4. Many CEO will be converted to NEO's. Mostly by airlines that have both CEO's and NEO's in the order book.