In one of AeroAnalysis’ articles “Engine Drama On A320neo Might Help The Boeing 737MAX” we already noted that the issues on the Airbus A320neo could give Boeing some leverage in pitching the Boeing 737MAX. Now after being months overdue, Qatar Airways has canceled its order for the first Airbus A320neo following several issues.
Boeing 737MAX for Airbus A320neo swap unlikely
Qatar Airways has canceled the first order amidst engine issues and problems with the aircraft’s hydraulics. The Gulf carrier is now considering canceling 4 aircraft that are now in production and might also be late for delivery. The airline claimed it is now 5 neo aircraft short, which is impacting Qatar Airway’s 2016 growth profile.
Qatar Airways CEO, Akbar Al Baker, has threatened to swap engine supplier or even cancel all Airbus A320neos on order and order the Boeing 737NG which will be converted to the Boeing 737MAX. Although this is possible, swapping engines will push back deliveries 6 to 8 months while ordering the Boeing 737 would pushdeliveries even further back in time. So the quick fix for Qatar Airways is to accept the Airbus A320neo and seek compensation, any other way will most certainly lead to lower growth rates.