Tuesday, 11 December 2007 20:39
Hi Capt Lim,
It seems to me that Boeing's loss of market share is rapidly turning into a business class case study. With Boeing losing so many orders (even from previously loyal domestic carriers) in the small plane segment, Airbus has been able to leverage its way up-market where its planes are less comfortable for the flier (i.e. B777 vs. A340) and less economical for the carrier (4 engines vs. 2). It's analogous to Japanese manufacturers selling small, fuel-efficient cars and ultimately being able to go after the big-ticket buyers with Lexus, etc. Of course, these thoughts (admittedly from an aviation industry ignorant non-pilot) avoid the whole issue of price and the subsidies that Airbus receives so that it can dump its planes for more share.
My question, does Boeing have any plans to re-tool the Boeing 737 and improve its safety reputation (the rudder hardover issue has never been fully resolved to my knowledge) such that it can defend itself better down-market?
I would love to see it done if it is economically feasible as Airbus and its (un)American Sales Manager don't compete fairly.
Thank you for your views. I do not represent Boeing but I believe they are 'retooling' the Boeing 737 and have been continually improving their safety reputation. As regards to the rudder hardover issue, they have come up with a design solution for the rudder power control unit. A spokesman said that they would put them on the production airplanes and begin the retrofit.
As soon as they got these rudder PCU's out into the fleet, they would certainly be installed by all the Airlines with a total Boeing 737 fleet of about 2800 airplanes worldwide.