Boeing expects pricing premium for 737 MAX

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Boeing expects airline customers to pay a premium for its re-engined 737 MAX, which it said will have a 7% advantage in operating costs over the Airbus A320neo.

"Our customers have always paid a premium for our airplane over the competition's airplane... we fully expect going forward that customers will pay some kind of premium for what we are going to do with the MAX," said Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO Jim Albaugh.

He declined to elaborate on this pricing premium, but referred to the touted 7% improvement in operating costs over the A320neo, saying: "We are hopeful we will get a premium."

Airbus has sought to increase the price of the A320neo by about $7-$8 million, and has said that business case has worked very well. Airbus calculated the premium as one-half of the net present value of the lifetime fuel burn improvement.

It has so far collected more than 1,000 A320neo orders and commitments. Airbus is scheduled to make first A320neo deliveries in October 2015, while 737 MAX deliveries will start in 2017.