The new chief executive of Airbus says he is ready to “bet” that the European aircraft maker’s planned new A350 widebody passenger jet will not suffer the same three-year delay that Boeing had with its 787 Dreamliner.
Fabrice Brégier said in his first interview since taking the top role at Airbus on June 1 that he believed the aircraft maker could hit its revised target to deliver the A350 to its first customer during the first half of 2014, describing the timetable as “challenging” but “achievable”.
Investors in EADS, Airbus’ parent company, are concerned about the possibility of serious delays on the A350 after acute production problems and delays with the A380 superjumbo.
These problems on the A380 have been a big drag on Airbus’ earnings and therefore EADS’ profit, with the superjumbo program’s status only due to switch from loss-making to break even in 2015.
Airbus’ A350 program has already been subject to two delays, pushing back the timetable for delivering the A350 to its first customer from the middle of 2013 to potentially the middle of 2014, partly because of problems with component suppliers.Page 1 of 3 | Next Page