SIA in no rush to order A350-1000, 777X

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Singapore Airlines (SIA) has given no indication of when it will evaluate the Airbus A350-1000 and Boeing 777X as possible replacements for its 777-300ERs, the backbone of its long-haul fleet.

Responding to a reporter's question at its results briefing this morning, chief executive Goh Choon Phong said the Star Alliance carrier will start evaluating the new widebodies "when we think we need to".

“We have not decided on when we will look at, say, an RFP on the aircraft,” he adds.

Goh also says that even though the airline holds options for 20 A350s that could be converted to the -1000 variant, the 777X is “one possibility... that could potentially replace the 777-300ER.”

SIA has 21 777-300ERs in its fleet and six more on order. It also has a large order for 70 A350-900s, making it more likely that the -1000s could replace the 777s in due course.

Flightglobal’s Ascend Online database, however, shows that SIA’s -300ERs are still quite young, with the oldest examples delivered in 2006. Deliveries of the remaining six aircraft are scheduled out to 2015.

SIA also announced earlier this year that those 777s will feature an upgraded cabin, with new seats and IFE systems across all classes that will also be fitted to its A350s.

Lufthansa became the first carrier to commit to the 777X in September when it announced a firm order for 34 777-9Xs. Boeing is also said to be in negotiations with Cathay Pacific, Emirates and Qatar Airways on potential orders ahead of the aircraft’s formal launch.

Boeing is expected to formally launch the General Electric GE9X-powered 777X at the upcoming Dubai Airshow.