Los Angeles firm orders 50 Boeing 787
Airbus and Boeing continue to slug it out at the Paris Air Show with each trading announcement of major orders for their respective next-generation planes.
Los Angeles-based International Lease Finance Corp. placed orders Tuesday with Boeing Co. for another 50 787 Dreamliner aircraft. This brings ILFC's total 787 ordersheet to 74 aircraft worth nearly $9 billion and makes the firm the single largest customer for the new aircraft.
Airbus scored two major orders for its new A350 XWB aircraft, signing up Russian airline Aeroflot for 22 aircraft and Kingfisher Airlines of India for 50.
The Aeroflot order, worth slightly more than $3 billion, and the Kingfisher deal, worth about $7 billion, spotlights Airbus' attempts to regain support for its troubled A350 airliner.
The multinational European consortium has been struggling to regain its footing against the Dreamliner since it was forced to delay the A350 due to redesigns in answer to customer complaints over fuel economy and space.
Ironically, one of the most vocal critics of the original Airbus design was ILFC, who signed up as the first A350 customer only to later switch to the Boeing aircraft.
Airbus' redesign has delayed the first delivery date of the plane until 2013, now years behind the scheduled first delivery of Boeing’s 787, due next May.
Even Airbus’ order from Aeroflot was tempered by the fact that the Russian firm has also ordered 22 of the Boeing Dreamliners.
Boeing is far ahead of Airbus in firm orders, with more than 600 for the 787 so far. Airbus has acknowledged just over 100 firm orders for the A350.