Airbus Nets No New Orders But Also Avoids Cancellations In May

On Friday, Airbus announced its order and delivery results for May. Altogether, the manufacturer netted no new orders for the month. However, despite the aviation industry being rocked by the global health crisis, it can take some consolation in reporting that there were no cancellations either.

Airbus Aircraft
Airbus has shared the latest update on its customer activity. Photo: Airbus

Slow period

According to a press release seen by Simple Flying, the European outfit’s gross orders by May 31st totaled 365 aircraft, and net orders stood at 299 planes. Moreover, the firm made 24 deliveries of its jets. These shipments were spread between the A220, A320 and A350 XWB families.

Like May, Airbus also didn’t report any cancellations in April, which contrasts with Boeing’s results. The United States manufacturer had orders for 108 737 MAX aircraft, and two 787 Dreamliners dropped in the same month.

For May, Airbus delivered two A220-300 to Air Canada and 18 A320 family aircraft, including the first A320neo to Wizz Air. In regards to widebodies, four A350 XWBs were shipped in both A350-900 and A350-1000 setups. Air France and Lufthansa took on the -900s while British Airways and Etihad each received the longer edition.

Lufthansa, Coronavirus, Airbus A380
Lufthansa received another A350 last month. Photo: Getty Images

May’s activity brings Airbus’ total logged commercial aircraft orders since its founding to 20,407. This figure includes the following:

  • 642 A220s
  • 15,572 A320 family aircraft
  • 1,819 A330s
  • 930 A350 XWBs
  • and 251 A380s

A numbers game

As of May 31st, the business’ backlog stands at 7,621. These planes are split between 527 A220s, 6,199 A320 family aircraft (including 6,139 A320neo family jets), 322 A330s (including 287 A330neo units), 564 A350 XWBs and nine A380s.

Between the beginning of the year until the end of last month, Airbus handed over 160 planes. During the same period in the previous year, it had delivered 313 aircraft. Therefore, it achieved nearly half of the deliveries in the first five months of 2020.

A tough task

The coronavirus outbreak brought unprecedented challenges within the aviation market. The majority of the world’s airlines were forced to ground most of their aircraft due to global travel restrictions. Moreover, local policies and safety concerns meant that the company has to halt production at several sites. Subsequently, these circumstances meant fewer deliveries.

Airbus A350
Airbus is working hard to balance production in the current conditions. Photo: Airbus

In an attempt to adapt to the climate that the pandemic has brought, Airbus previously announced that it reduced its aircraft production capability by approximately one third.

Usually, Airbus would build the following per month:

  • 60 A320s
  • At least three A330s
  • 10 A350s

However, the new production goals per month are as follows:

  • 40 A320s
  • Two A330s
  • Six A350s

Nonetheless, the travel industry is slowly opening up across Europe. Many agencies and airlines are promoting summer sales to get the ball rolling again. Once carriers and manufacturers get to grips with their operations again, orders and deliveries should gradually rise again.

What are your thoughts on Airbus’ orders for May? How do you think the numbers will fair for the remainder of the year? Let us know what you think in the comment section.