Airbus has yet to firm the commitments to its A330neo but insists that it is not facing uncertainty from initial customers.

Six customers have tentatively signed for a total of 121 A330neo jets but the orders, all of which were unveiled in July, have still to be formally admitted to Airbus’s backlog.

Speaking during a third-quarter results briefing, Airbus Group chief financial officer Harald Wilhelm said: “[We] don’t see a big risk on these.”

He says the A330neo had a “very sound launch preparation” and that the airframer is confident about the aircraft’s specifications and its own ability to re-engine the type.

“We don’t have any question marks from customers who’ve expressed commitments so far,” he adds.

The airframer is cutting the monthly production rate for A330s – from 10 to nine aircraft – from the fourth quarter of 2015.

Wilhelm says the decision was taken because the company “could not secure sufficient orders in time for 2015 deliveries”.

He says the airframer needed to stay “rational” and “take the consequences and adjust”.

Against a production rate of nine aircraft per month there is still time to fill slots in 2016, he adds.

Airbus is optimistic that it can place the A330, particularly its regional version, with customers in China – a move which could provide a crucial production bridge between the A330 and A330neo.

Wilhelm says the Chinese market is a “good case from a customer perspective but also from our side”. He indicates that Airbus is keen to secure order “packages” which combine the A330 and A330neo.

Source: Cirium Dashboard