Neither the freighter nor the -900 variant of the Airbus A380 are likely to be revived in the near term, because the airframer wants to reduce its risk exposure to new projects.
Speaking after the delivery of Lufthansa's first A380 at Hamburg, Airbus chief executive Tom Enders described both variants as being "on the back-burner".
"We have to be realistic about what we can do with a given set of resources," he says. The company wants to achieve "cruise mode" on its A380 programme by stabilising production and focus on its A350 development.
Enders says the cargo market has been showing evidence of recovery, following a severe drop in traffic. But he points out that Airbus, with its A330-200F, has "a great new freighter" to offer the market.