Airbus is discussing compensation in the region of “a couple of million dollars” per aircraft with launch airlines that are affected by the six-month delay in deliveries of the A380.

380 Sydney

The manufacturer declines to provide details of the compensation package, but Airbus chief operating officer John Leahy told reporters in Australia last week: “The aircraft costs about $285 million a copy, so I think it is safe to say we are talking a couple of million dollars.” He added: “But let’s not get into details, that’s confidential between us and the customer.”

The first three airlines affected are Singapore Airlines (SIA), Qantas, and Emirates, which should begin receiving A380s in late 2006 (SIA) and early 2007 (Qantas/Emirates). Leahy was in Australia with the first A380 test aircraft, MSN001, as part of its Asia-Pacific tour. The aircraft was in Singapore on 11 November; Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, Australia, from 12-16 November; and Kuala Lumpur on 17 November.

The aircraft visited Australia at the request of Qantas as part of the airline’s 85th birthday celebrations. Qantas has 12 A380s on order for delivery from April 2007 through to June 2009, with the first A380s to operate to Los Angeles and London.

The A380’s visit to Australia comes as Qantas is finalising a proposal to go to its board on 7 December for the purchase of up to 100 Airbus A350s or Boeing 787s and ultra-long-range versions of the Airbus A340 or Boeing 777.

Source: Flight International