Fresh doubts over Airbus A380 as Emirates deliveries are delayed

Fresh doubts over Airbus A380 as Emirates deliveries are delayed

Fresh doubt has been cast over the future of the Airbus A380, with 12 aircraft deliveries postponed.

The news follows an agreement reached between Emirates Airline and Rolls-Royce, with the Toulouse based aircraft manufacturer to adapt the A380 delivery stream as a result.

Six aircraft deliveries will now be postponed from 2017 to 2018 and six others from 2018 to 2019.

Emirates is by far the largest customer for the ‘superjumbo’.

The latest postponement is believed to be linked to technical issues Emirates is having with the new Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines it has ordered for its fleet of A380s.

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Airbus has to date delivered just 193 superjumbos and has only a further 126 orders left to fulfil.

This despite having initially predicted demand for 1,200 over two decades from launch in 2007.

Following the latest announcement, Airbus re-confirmed the target to deliver around 12 A380s per year from 2018 as announced earlier in July 2016.

Further fixed cost reduction initiatives will be accelerated so the impact on break-even in 2017 is minimal.

Airbus has said that it can break even at an annual production rate of 20 A380s, which carry an order book price of $430 million.