Just days ahead of its public launch, officials from Boeing have suggested its troubled Dreamliner aircraft may encounter further delays before it is delivered to carriers.
Already over two years behind the schedule, the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner was due to be delivered – to Japan’s All Nippon Airways – in late 2010.
However, speaking ahead of the aircraft’s public debt at the Farnborough International Airshow next week, Boeing said further delays were likely.
“We’ve seen some issues recently that have pushed our schedule margin a bit,” explained Scott Fancher, general manager of the 787 Dreamliner programme.
Citing issues relate to “instrument configuration” and a need for additional inspection work, Mr Fancher said the first delivery may now take place as late as early 2011.
Boeing’s Dreamliner is already more than two years behind its original schedule.
Production of the new carbon-composite aircraft has been delayed five times in three years, as parts shortages, design problems and a two-month strike at Boeing’s factory all took a toll.
The first flight of the aircraft was also postponed six times.
“We wanted to give a little bit of a cautionary note that things could push into the first part of next year,” added Mr Fancher.
The 787 Dreamliner is being built in Seattle.
The manufacturer claims the aircraft is the most sophisticated plane yet; lighter, faster and emitting less CO2 than similar-sized planes currently flying.