Farnborough dogfight for Airbus and Boeing

Airbus plans to roll out a radically redesigned midsize plane at Farnborough Air Show on Monday, a $10 billion project that will compete with Boeing’s Dreamliner.The aerospace industry’s biannual show kicks off with the commercial giants Boeing and Airbus going head to head.

Airbus plans to launch a revamped A350 or A370 airliner to compete with Boeing’s 787. The A380 will also make an appearance.

But there is no end to the controversy with the management crisis at EADS, Airbus’ parent and the A380’s production headaches. Boeing Dreamliner is overweight and experiencing delays with some suppliers.

Then there is the never ending slanging match over who benefits the most from direct or indirect subsidies.

In the long-haul market Boeing has alreadt bagged 360 orders in two years for the Dreamliner, even before the first delivery. With the U.S. firm claiming the 787 has already earned the title as the most successful jet launch, while European rival Airbus has only scored just 100 orders for its planned A350.

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The week-long airshow in southern England comes as Airbus is caught in a storm of bad publicity after revealing production problems with its A380 superjumbo.

A London-based newspaper, The Business, reported Sunday that A380 customers have begun approaching Airbus regarding compensation.

Airbus is also putting effort into promoting the revamped A350 as “a very powerful product” according to an executive, which will allow the group to reassert its position in the market.

The cost of developing the jet could total about $10 billion , according to EADS, more than double its initial estimate.

Both companies look set to benefit from this year’s show and are expected to announce orders for their respective aircraft.

Boeing estimates the market for new commercial aircraft will total $2.6 trillion over the next 20 years.


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