Official figures from Airbus indicate that the airline manufacturer sold 41 jets in September, while also processing nine cancellations. While the sales indicate that a somewhat slow year for the airline industry continues, the 41 orders taken puts the European firm ahead of its great rival Boeing.
Norwegian Air cancellations
Five of the Airbus cancellations were intended for Norwegian Air, with the airline reducing its order of A320neos, and similarly trimming its overall order tally from 93 aircraft to 88. No indication has been given regarding the reason for this cancellation, but Simple Flying has approached Norwegian Air for comment.
Safety and trade issues have proved distracting for the airline industry in 2019, while competition at the budget end of the industry, in particular, has placed pressure on profit margins. Despite commercial considerations, Airbus revealed that it had attracted over 300 orders in the first nine months of the year, with the figure being reduced to 127 net new orders following cancellations.
This figure means that the European planemaker is well ahead of Boeing, whose sales have been hit by its fast-selling 737 MAX jet being grounded. By comparison, Boeing registered sales of just 145 aircraft in the period up to the end of August, which was reduced to a net total of just 55 including cancellations.
Worse news for Boeing was that this total even plummets to a negative figure of 85 once adjustments to historic orders now deemed unlikely to be carried out are further accounted for. This serves to underline the problems that the manufacturer currently faces.
Airbus recently reported new orders for 14 A220 and 10 A321neo planes, while declining to name the customers. It has also recently come to light that the aircraft manufacturer is nearing a deal for approximately 12 A220 jets with Interjet of Mexico. African giant Ethiopian Airways is also reportedly contemplating a large order for the ever-popular small Airbus too.
The latest update to the Airbus order list is the first that has been released since the United States announced that it will impose tariffs of 10% on the company’s aircraft. While the impact of this will not be seen until reports later in the year, Airbus can take some solace in the fact that the Trump administration has spared its Mobile plant from paying import duties on parts for planes being assembled there.
Airbus’ A330neo proved particularly popular in September figures, with 12 additional orders confirmed for the upgraded aircraft. The A330neo is considered a direct rival for the Boeing 787, and appears to be faring particularly well against its Boeing competitor.
easyJet recently took delivery of the 9,000th A320 airliner that Airbus has produced. While Airbus is on track for 10,000 A320s, the impact of the new import tariffs on its all-important US customers remains to be seen.