The Boeing 767 was something of a disruption when it entered service. It came as part of a family with the 757. Boeing quickly added to the family and ensured the 767 rapidly took over the market in the middle segment. The aircraft’s future is as a freighter or tanker. Its disruptive days are over.
The next chart shows how the past few years have seen the fleet in passenger service decline as it aged. The retirements accelerated since 2010 and by year-end 2017, the in-service fleet was down by nearly a third (31%).
If we look a the top twenty passenger airlines operating the 767 from 2010 to 2017 we have these lists. The US airlines clearly embraced the 767 and Delta has been a diehard 767 fan. But even the most fervent fans must face reality. The 767 can’t last forever.
If we take the 2017 list and look at what some airlines have ordered, it gives us an idea of how Boeing is doing to keep its customers. As we can see, several airlines have not made any decisions yet. However, among those that have made a decision, it looks (for now) like Boeing has lost nearly 40% of its 767 customer base. Note the Delta A350 order is to replace the 747-400 and has no bearing on the 767 fleet.
Of course, the numbers could change dramatically as decisions are made. For example, the switch at Hawaiian from A330neo to 787 saw Airbus’ share decline by about 5%.
Boeing plans for the NMA to enter service around 2025. One has to wonder how many 767 operators will remain loyal, waiting that long or deploying the 787-8 in the meantime? The 767-300ER filled a specific requirement very well and was only beaten by the A330. This is going to remain an interesting space to watch.