While not officially named as yet, it is almost certain that the next Boeing aircraft will be called the B797. The new jet aircraft will reportedly be loaded full of Boeing’s groundbreaking technology making it one of the most efficient in the sky. While very little is officially known about the aircraft a lot of rumours have been flying around. While Boeing has confirmed the range and capacity that they are looking to give with the New Mid-size Airplane, the project is still not officially underway. In fact, it still needs to be signed off by the company’s executives.
What Do We Know?
The things that we firmly know are the range and seat number that Boeing is trying to achieve with this new aeroplane. This was revealed during a presentation given at the Farnborough Airshow. Boeing is looking to introduce two B797 aircraft. The first will be the B797-6 will be designed to carry 228 passengers a distance 4500nmi. Afterwards, the American manufacturer will follow with the B797-7. This larger aircraft would carry 267 passengers, however, it would only reach 4,100nmi. This means the aircraft would comfortably be able to operate transatlantic flights.
2-3-2 Seating Layout
The latest rumours state that the B797 would come equipped with two aisles. This means that the aircraft would likely be laid out with a 2-3-2 layout in economy. While this may seem odd, the fact that passengers are continuing to spend a significant amount on premium economy seems to indicate that it would work. In fact, with this layout, around 85% of the seats would be a window or aisle seat.
30,000 New Routes
The aircraft could potentially open up to 30,000 new routes. At the moment so many of the long haul flights are serviced by bigger jets between hubs which are fed by regional flights. With the smaller jet with the larger range, such an aircraft would be able to open more point to point routes. This means that to fly from Manchester to St Louis, a passenger would be able to fly direct rather than changing once or twice.
Cheaper to Operate
In addition to being packed with new technology, the airliner will reportedly be much cleaner to operate than current aircraft. In fact, the B797 will supposedly be 40% cheaper to operate than its Airbus rival, the A330neo. As such Boeing clearly feels that the market would be perfect for such an aircraft. In fact, the company estimate that over 20 years, up to 5,000 of the B797 could be sold to the industry.
When Will We See The B797?
Having not even been officially sanctioned at the board level, the Boeing 797 is still likely to be some way away. As Boeing is currently focusing on the B777X, the new B797 will likely be on the back burner until that project is completed. The official decision on whether to move the project forward will be made during the next year. Following this, if it is given the go-ahead, Boeing will likely aim to bring the first aircraft to market by 2025.
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