Airbus intends to keep its Airbus A320 family of aircraft in step with industry requirements, and has no intention of ceding substiantial market share to Bombardier's new CSeries.
Speaking today at the ISTAT conference in Phoenix, Airbus head of leasing and investor marketing Mark Pearman-Wright acknowledged that Bombardier's 30-strong order from Lufthansa in the lower-capacity end of the narrowbody market makes the Canadian airframer a competitor.
However, he stresses: "We are not going to leave that A319 market alone."
The spend "is there" to make sure Airbus has a programme that keeps the aircraft "at the forefront of the industry".
While Airbus intends to protect market share in the narrowbody sector, it sees a broader trend towards larger-capacity types. "The industry is no longer driven by frequency," he says.
In light of this, Bombardier will have to be "pretty creative" in how it markets the CSeries.