Airbus and Boeing delivered just short of 13,000 airliners over the last decade, and signed 18,600 net orders over the same period. The production and sales volumes equate to a healthy book-to-bill ratio of almost 1.5 for the 10-year interval.
The last decade witnessed a relentless rise in airliner production – that is until 2019 where shipments at Boeing were severely affected by the 737 Max crisis. Just 57 737 Max aircraft were delivered in 2019 compared with 256 the year before, as Boeing halted 737 Max deliveries in the wake of the global safety grounding.
In 2010, between them Airbus and Boeing delivered 970 aircraft and production enjoyed annual average rises of around 6% through to the peak in 2018, when 1,606 aircraft were delivered. Then combined output fell by 2% last year to 1,243 aircraft amid the Max crisis. Total deliveries across all the Airbus and Boeing lines during the 10 years reached 12,961 aircraft, according to FlightGlobal analysis of manufacturer data.
The wider impact of the Max delivery suspension has been severe for Boeing. Despite being the industry’s lead producer for the bulk of the decade (and seven of the last eight years), Seattle ended up losing to Airbus in the final tally by a margin of 220 aircraft. This will be particularly galling for the US manufacturer, given that Boeing missed its original 2019 delivery target by around 500 aircraft, based on its early guidance for the year.
The Airbus sales team held a more significant lead across the 10 years of the 2010s, securing 10,220 net orders against Boeing’s tally of 8,620. This gave Toulouse a 54% market share across the decade. Again, the Max effect came into play for the last eight months of 2019, with sales effectively in limbo and the US airframer’s total net orders dropping to just 54 aircraft.
So across the decade, Airbus’s book-to-bill equated to 1.6, ahead of its rival’s 1.6 which equates to the global average across the decade.
The Airbus decade figures are skewed slightly by the acquisition of the CSeries programme from Bombardier in 2018. The manufacturer started including orders and deliveries for the small mainline twinjet after completing the purchase of the programme, specifically 68 deliveries and 198 net orders in 2018 and 2019. CSeries metrics prior to the acquisition are not included in Airbus’s data.