Delta to announce deal for 100 Boeing Max 10 aircraft

A Delta Air Lines Boeing 737 approaches LAX for landing.

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Boeing will seek to shore up its struggling 737 Max10 and 777X jets with orders officially worth more than $15 billion from Delta Air Lines and Lufthansa this week as the aerospace industry chokes in its biggest event since Covid-19.

Industry sources said the US aircraft maker, which is struggling to maintain its duopoly with Europe’s Airbus, will strike early at the Farnborough Airshow, which opens on Monday, after months of talks to sell its biggest single-aisle aircraft at Delta.

Reuters first reported in March that Delta was discussing an order for 100 Max 10 planes, and announced last week that the airline was also in talks to order around 12 more Airbus A220s as part of a deal. which will likely be announced on Tuesday.

Germany’s Lufthansa is likely to secure a deal for around 10 Boeing large freighters, including seven of the recently launched freighter version of the 777X, sources said.

Neither side has commented ahead of the show, which is taking place despite an emergency UK weather warning and restricted rail access caused by predicted record temperatures.

As Britain melts, aerospace companies will do their best to show civilian demand is intact after the worst downturn in their history. Rising defense spending will also be a focus as the industry rallies under the shadow of war in Ukraine.

Boeing released a broadly stable civilian jet forecast on Sunday.

Even so, many of the agreements will be tentative or formal business signings already underway, and virtually all will be presented as contributions to reducing emissions in support of a common goal of net zero by 2050. said the delegates.

EasyJet is aiming to win shareholder approval for a recent deal for 56 Airbus A320neos, putting it on Farnborough’s radar.

Poland’s LOT is studying proposals from existing suppliers Boeing and Embraer as well as Airbus and engine manufacturers, but will not make a decision at the show, a person familiar with the talks said, denying a report that the airline had already chosen Airbus.

But the biggest focus will be on the Max 10s and 777Xs that Boeing plans to fly in a scaled-down Farnborough display.

Both planes are the source of major headaches as Boeing grapples with regulatory issues following a two-year safety crisis triggered by crashes of a smaller Max.

Boeing has a December deadline to get approval for the 737 Max 10 — the largest member of its single-aisle family — or meet new cockpit alert requirements, unless Congress waives it. .

Chief Executive Dave Calhoun has said Boeing could be forced to cancel the 737 Max 10 – a move that could have repercussions across the industry, including for rival Airbus, reluctant to be dragged in too soon in a race to develop new aircraft.

However, the head of Boeing’s commercial division, Stan Deal, told reporters on Sunday that the cancellation of the Max 10, which analysts say is necessary to compete with the strong sales of the Airbus A321neo, is “not not a high probability pathway”.

Boeing is also on track to deliver its first 787 within a year after a series of regulatory and production issues, Deal said.

Aerospace executives will also be under pressure this week to address concerns about supply chains and a spike in inflation that raises questions about input costs and consumer demand.

Airbus, the current market leader, is sticking to its plan to increase single-aisle A320neo production to 75 planes per month in 2025 from 50 currently, but some suppliers fear supply chains will keep pace.

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