Airbus would welcome Boeing formally launching its proposed 737 Max 10X, but still expects the A321 to dominate the so-called "middle of the market".

Asked during a briefing on the sidelines of the IATA AGM in Cacun what he thought about the 737-10X, chief operating officer – customers John Leahy remarked: "I hope they do it; I think it's a very marginal aircraft."

Boeing did a "soft launch" of the proposed double-stretch to the 737 in March, and has signaled that, if launched, it could enter service in 2020. There is some speculation that it could be launched at the upcoming Paris air show, but few carriers have shown interest in the variant, and lessors have also given it a poor reception.

Leahy linked the proposed 737 variant to the 767-400 and 757-300, which were niche stretches of existing aircraft that "gave up range and performance and the market never accepted any one of those airplanes".

Going further, Leahy described Boeing as having a "crisis in the middle of the market" due to the success of the A321 in the market against the largest 737 – presently the -900ER, and later the Max 9.

"They dominated that middle of the market for years, and now they've lost that. They don't have the 757 anymore, they can’t think of a replacement for it, the 767 has faded away. So we have now moved into the middle of the market, and we dominate the middle of the market, so they are flailing about having idea after idea."

Source: Cirium Dashboard