Airbus chief executive Tom Enders is braced for an intense half-year as the airframer aims to catch up on its single-aisle delivery backlog, and clearing the parked fleet of engineless A320neos.
The airframer would need to deliver over 53 A320-family aircraft each month over the second half just to equal last year’s output, discounting any higher targets.
“We’ve been backloaded before, everybody knows that,” Enders told investors during the Farnborough air show. “But here we’re backloaded for the entire second half of the year.”
During June the company handed over 67 single-aisle jets which, he says, was the third-best month in its history for A320-family deliveries.
Enders says the airframer is “mobilising resources” – not just in its commercial division – and trying to fit all the parked A320neos with engines, in order to “get them off the tarmac before the end of the year”.
“This will be a hell of a race in order to make our delivery numbers,” he says, pointing to the original target of 800 aircraft over its entire range. “Yes, it can be done, but it will be a hell of a ride, that’s for sure.”