Airbus began making serious inroads into Boeing's traditional ascendancy in the commercial aircraft market in 1998, largely on the back of strong sales and deliveries of the A320 and A330/340 families.

In 2003 the European manufacturer took the upper hand for the first time in its history in terms of deliveries market share. It extended its lead in the following two years, only to be pegged back by Boeing last year. Boeing's fight back has been led by the 777 and the 737 with their combined deliveries rising from a total of 247 in 2005 to 355 last year.

The shift in the headline delivery market share reflects Boeing's sharp production build-up, which surpassed that of Airbus in 2006. Boeing delivered 386 jetliners last year, up from 285 in 2005. Airbus also boosted output, from 372 units in 2005 to 432 aircraft in 2006. In 2007 the manufacturers will be almost at parity, with both expecting to build 440-450 aircraft.

Source: Airline Business