Boeing's planned 747-500X/600X superjumbos are nothing but "warmed-over derivatives", a rival Airbus Industrie spokesman said at the Show yesterday.

Its own proposed Airbus A3XXX "...will begin life where the Boeing 747 ends, even with its planned 650-seat 747-700X," says Airbus chief operating officer Volker von Tein.

Speaking on behalf of chief executive Jean Pierson, who had to fly to Toulouse to sign new sales contracts (see separate story), von Tein says: "Airbus Industrie is set on breaking Boeing's monopoly on large transportation aircraft."



Boeing's plans for the growth derivatives of the 747 were no surprise.

"I fully expected them to do so. We are already hearing supposedly reasoned arguments from our competitor that there is no room for another manufacturer in the market for large-capacity aircraft," he says.

"I would suggest they opt out of the competition because once the A3XX is on the market, they will be proven right ... there is no room for their warmed-over derivative, just as in the A320 category."

This was a reference to the 1984 battle when Boeing said there was no market for a single-aisle aircraft and were Airbus to launch one, Boeing would catch up and beat it.

"They lost the market and we won it," says von Tein. "Boeing's stretched 747 is the end of the road for this programme."

Airbus is talking to manufacturers in Asia and the United States in the search for partners for the planned 550-800 seat A3XX, says von Tein, declining to name them.



Source: Flight Daily News