Airbus Delays Aircraft Deliveries

Some airlines are likely looking at delivery delays to receive the new A380 aircraft from Airbus. The European manufacturer still expects to deliver its first A380 to Singapore Airlines later this year, but expects many of the rest of Singapore's new A380s plus those of other airlines to be delayed by up to eight months. Production issues including required modifications to electrical systems are being blamed for the delays. These production problems will result in only nine A380 aircraft being delivered to customers in 2007, and the manufacturer says it will fall short of its target deliveries in both 2008 and 2009. Beyond Singapore, other airlines with sizable A380 orders include Emirates, Lufthansa, Qantas and Air France. Airbus and Boeing have been locked in a fierce battle for worldwide customers, so the Airbus delays are likely to boost Boeing's stature for sales of its new Boeing 787. On June 14, in fact, Boeing said Singapore would buy 20 787s with the first delivery in 2011. As for Airbus, it plans to negotiate late delivery fees with its customers, but some of those customers might opt to terminate their Airbus contracts.

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