December 2012 » AirInsight
A Commercial Aviation Consultancy

Monthly Archives: December 2012

Allegiant Travel Company just announced its proposed transaction to acquire ten A319s from Cebu Pacific Air has been terminated as a result of the parties’ failure to satisfy certain conditions to proceeding with the transaction. The potential transaction was made public on July 30, 2012 after the signing of the letter of intent.

“We are disappointed that we were not able to finalize this agreement on which we spent a substantial amount of time and effort,” said Andrew C. Levy, Allegiant President. “Unfortunately we were unable to come to terms on some of the economic provisions of the transaction and as we have demonstrated in the past, we will not purchase aircraft just for the sake of growth. Our disciplined approach in asset purchases is a core competency that we will not compromise.  We continue to have fleet flexibility in 2013 even without the Cebu A319s. Seven of the… Continue reading

It is unusual to get so much news from the company. Two releases in two days.  Yesterday we heard that a new customer based in “the Americas” signed an LoI for 12+18 CS100s.  Also mentioned is that wing join on the first the CS300 has stared too.  Today the announcement is that airBaltic has firmed its LoI for 10+10 CS300s.

A good ending for 2012 it seems.


In the wake of Airbus “Pinocchio” advertisement critical of economic claims by Boeing, AirInsight has decided to take an independent look at the economics of these to aircraft and compare the aircraft.

While both aircraft are the largest in their respective fleets, we don’t see them as direct competitors, as they are in much different seat classes.  This is like comparing an A319 with a 737-900ER, or an 737-700 with the A321.  While both are in the same class – narrow-body trunk liners – they would not normally compete against each other in an airline competition.

In estimating operating economics, each manufacturer will utilize a different set of economic assumptions, normally those that optimize the performance of their aircraft against the competitor.  And because cost per available seat mile (CASM) is such an important metric for airline fleet planners, the manufacturers often play with seating configurations as… Continue reading

The large twin-engine, twin-aisle competition for the future is gaining momentum following the opening of the Airbus A350 Final Assembly Line in Toulouse last month and the customer meet October 31-November 1 hosted by Boeing to discuss the 777X concepts.

What is clear from talking with customers who attended the Boeing meeting is that the 777X is far from clear. General concepts have emerged as the favorites: a composite wing and wing box, new engines, a conventional metal fuselage and system upgrades.

The wing span remains undecided, with one concept including folding wingtips to keep the airplane within the 777’s current airport “box.” Whether Boeing elects to go with a sole source (GE) engine or a dual source (GE plus either Rolls-Royce or Pratt & Whitney) is also undecided.

Boeing is showing concepts for the 777-8X (a 350 passenger model that would replace the 777-300ER and compete directly with the… Continue reading

While many in the industry view the COMAC 919 as China’s aerospace learning vehicle that will enable it to enter the modern airliner industry, many others are less pessimistic regarding its future.  With a veritable plethora of western suppliers on the C919 program, from the CFM LEAP engines to Honeywell, Parker, Liebherr, Eaton, Monogram, Labinal and other well known names that also serve Boeing, Airbus, Bombardier and Embraer, the C919 has a top tier supply chain.

Add Bombardier’s partnership in a number of areas, including joint worldwide customer support, and the odds of success for the C919 in the near term begins to look better than it did just a couple of years ago.

Of course, the proof will be a certified airplane with strong economics, and how the Chinese minimize “weight creep” that seems to accompany every new aircraft program.  If the C919 can come in near… Continue reading

Passing through the fifth anniversary of the A380, we spoke with Mary Ellen Jones, President of Engine Alliance about the company’s view on the A380 program, the VLA market in general and how EA sees the future of VLAs.

Ms Jones shares some interesting data points. EA has generated a 99.9% sustained dispatch reliability. In July their GP7200 engine passed through 1 million flight hours.