Emirates President Sir Tim Clark caused a behind-the-scenes stir at the Dubai Airshow on Tuesday, commenting that his airline will not order the Airbus A350-1000 until Rolls-Royce improves the durability of the Trent XWB-97 engines.
Clark made his comments during a media roundtable. According to Bloomberg, he criticized the limited time on wing between inspections of the XWB-97. The engine is what Clark called “defective”, as it can only do a quarter of the 2.000 to 2.500 flight cycles before it needs inspections for tear and wear on internal components. Unless a fix is found, this makes the engine unattractive and expensive to operate, increasing unit costs and reducing unit margins. With the XWB-97 as the exclusive powerplant on the A350-1000, airlines have no other options available.
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