So I have mentioned before Airbus bashing of the 787 project to some idsbelief, therefore searching I have found this list of quotes by John Leahy,
Airbus top salesman...
'"If [Boeing] do something that is a replacement for the B767, we
will respond." But Leahy said he did not think there was any rush. If
Airbus were to build an A330-200 replacement, he said, 2012 would be
the logical timetable to enter service.' -- Quoted during 2002,
Seattle Times, 15-Jun-03.
"There's a 50% probability [that Boeing] won't product anything more
than hype [with the 7E7] ... Airbus could offer the same engine [on
the A330]. Instead of [the A330] having three engine choices, we'll
have four." -- Aviation Daily, 16-Apr-03.
"The 'dream machine' or whatever it's called? I couldn't have hoped
for a better name, being their competitor. It's a PR man's dream, but
an engineer's nightmare ... It's purely a PR man's dream. I think the
travelling public knows that, too, which is probably why they voted
[for the name 'Dreamliner']. In fact, it seems most of the people at
Airbus who voted picked the 'Dreamliner'. Some of the traditionalists
voted for 'Stratoclimber', which would have been a better name."
"I was pretty much convinced that [Boeing] would do [the 7E7] in
recent months. But now I'm convinced they're not going to do it. Why?
Because now they're talking about the sexy shape of the windshield,
the distinctive nose and the rake of the wingtip fences and how it
will be distinguishable from other airplanes in the marketplace. And
how people will just look at it and say: 'Wow!'"
"When someone starts doing that, it's because they're saying to
themselves: 'I've got a 'me-too' product. I'm trying to leapfrog the
A330-200 and what the engineers have just come up with looks an awful
lot like my competitor's airplane."
"It is a bit like a bunch of guys in the 1960s in Detroit,
saying: 'We can hold the Japanese off for a few more years. We've got
to get those tailfins just a little bit higher, get a little bit more
chrome, some really dynamite headlights, and the Japanese are going
to be history, because everyone's going to want our new Cadillacs or
whatever. And they went right off the cliff doing it."
"I hate to say this, as we're spending a lot of money to be here, but
we are machine-tool makers. These are the machine tools of the air
transport industry. They're sold on seat-mile costs, ton-mile costs,
range, payload, environmental efficiency and fuel burn [and not on
their looks]. That's not the way you buy machine tools."
'Leahy said what convinced him that the Boeing project won't fly was
Boeing's announcement that it was going to have a final assembly
cycle of three days instead of 30 days, a reduction of 90% compared
to the norm in the business. "Why would you do that? Because the
business case isn't working."'
'Leahy says he's so convinced the Dreamliner will never fly that he's
started taking wagers.'
'Leahy predicted that, if Boeing does launch the Dreamliner program,
it will be a commercial flop as Airbus' competitor will have to
amortize the US$8bn development cost, which he said would
automatically ad $15m to the sticker price and give Airbus an
advantage because the development cost of the A330-200, which it is
supposed to kill, was only $400m as it is a derivative of the
"If [Boeing] bring out something that costs $8bn in 2008, they're not
going to be around for the 2012-15 cycle." -- Dow Jones Newswires, 18-
"[The 7E7] is more a marketing tool than an engineering reality ...
It's guerilla marketing. It's an attempt to say, 'don't buy my
competitor's product now, just sit around until I think of something
else to do'." -- Associated Press, 19-Jun-03.
"I think [the 7E7] is quite similar to the threat posed by the Sonic
Cruiser ... [Boeing] basically told the airlines, there is something
else coming. Spend the next couple of years studying it with us."
'However, "Boeing will eventually have to come up with a replacement
for the B767. But, I don't think it will be anything along the lines
of this 'Super Efficient' twin. What you will end up seeing is a
relatively ordinary airplane similar to the B767 that will try and
match the A330-200. They may get close, but it will be a plain
vanilla competitor to what is a tough standard to topple -- the A330-
"[Boeing] will have an US$8bn development program to make an airplane
that except for the engines might be 1 or 2 percent more efficient
than the A330-200. What's to keep us from taking that same engine and
putting it on the A330-200? So, what [Boeing is] talking about is an
$8bn development program to get, except for the engines, a couple
percent improvement, if that, over the A330-200."
'Leahy [also] noted that fewer than 1,000 Boeing B767s have been sold
since the plane entered service.'
"So, 25 years and 900 planes. Figure out how you will get a payback
"I can wipe out that 2 percent very quickly by having a lower priced
airplane because I don't have to amortize an $8bn program over 900
planes, if [Boeing] can ever get to 900 planes." -- Seattle Post-
'...Airbus had proposed a shortened version of its A330-200, with
fewer seats, but with 500nm more range. A lighter version, at 195t,
was even under study to respond to regional requirements. The only
problem was that the 'A330-500' kept the same wing as the A330-200,
with, as a result, less performance and higher operating
costs ... "Nobody has asked me about the A330-500 in the last 18
months," underlines Leahy. "The A330-500 was an effort made in good
faith to satisfy an anticipated requirement, but the market
said 'no'," added Airbus Marketing Director Alan Pardoe.' --
'Leahy concentrated on competition between the 7E7 and A330. He also
focused on bulk cargo rather than volume, saying the former is a
more "real world" concern for airlines, and concluded that
differences between the baseline 7E7 and A330-200 will be a wash.
Leahy expressed skepticism that Boeing's initial specifications will
hold once engineers eat up space for more equipment and systems and
such heavy items as large-pallet cargo doors.' -- Aviation Week, 15-
'Leahy ... said he doesn't expect to see the 7E7 launch by year-end
and that the plane would do no better than the existing Airbus
product, the A330-200 ... "We've got about 85 percent of the market
now compared with an airplane that used to dominate the market. But
using today's technology, Boeing will build a plane that may be
better than the B767, but that will be similar to the A330-200." --
Tulsa World, 26-Oct-03.
"You can increase the hype, but you can't change the physics. The
cabin will look like the A330, and the economics of the [7E7] will be
similar as well." -- Wall Street Journal, 18-Nov-03.
'[Leahy] said Airbus doesn't see the 7E7 as a threat because Airbus
has boosted its share of the market for planes of that size in the
last 10 years. "The 7E7 is a mistake; [Boeing]'re trying to catch up
with our existing product."' -- Dow Jones Newswires, 17-Dec-03.
"If the question is: if [Boeing] bring out the 7E7 what are we going
to do? The answer is nothing. We are very content to stay with our
A330-200." -- Reuters, 17-Dec-03.
'"We welcome competition," [Leahy] said. But he added that Airbus
believes the airplane will fall short of Boeing's promises. "It's a
current-technology airplane. That doesn't set the world on fire." --
Wall Street Journal, 17-Dec-03.
"I can't figure out who the customers are who are about to but the
7E7. As soon as I do, I'll go out and talk to them about the A330-
200." -- Associated Press, 17-Dec-03.
'"As we look at the economics of the 7E7, 20 percent lower fuel
consumption, [Boeing] say it'll have 214 seats, and we have 241 on
the A330-200," Leahy said. Using Boeing's numbers, he said, the 7E7
will have operating costs per plane trip of a few percentage points
lower than the A330-200. But, because the A330-200 has more seats,
the Boeing plane will be 2 percent more expensive per passenger
mile. "We don't see that as an overwhelming case for the airlines to
switch to Boeing's plane." -- Toronto Star, 18-Dec-03.
'Over the past several months, Airbus officials have tweaked Boeing
by suggesting they can easily adapt the new 7E7 engines to their A330-
200. But Leahy downplayed that possibility last week. "I am not sure
that we would need new engines as they would enhance operating costs
by no more than 2 percent."'
"The proposed 7E7 is actually very similar to the A330-200 that is as
good without the risks." -- Aviation Week, 22-Dec-03.
'[Leahy] said Airbus isn't planning any moves or product changes to
compete with the 7E7. "We don't feel that we need to do anything with
the product right now." -- Dow Jones Newswires, 24-Mar-04.
'Airbus executivces have sought to minimize the 7E7's advantages, and
yesterday they suggested ANA's order largely reflected its close ties
with Boeing. "ANA did not ask for a proposal from Airbus and did not
ask for performance information of any competing aircraft from
Airbus," Leahy said. "This almost never happens." -- Wall Street
'"Except for the engines, the 7E7 is virtually the same aircraft" as
the A330. He says that "one of the 7E7's Achilles' Heels" is that the
baseline aircraft -- which has about 10-15% less capacity than the
A330-200 -- is "too small." Leahy says given that the fuel represents
about 30% of total cash operating costs (COC) and that, as the A330-
200 is a larger aircraft, the 7E7-8 only has a 4% advantage (in fuel
costs) over the Airbus on a COC per seat basis. Overall, Airbus
calculates that the smaller 7E7-8 will actually have a COC per seat
2.5% greater than the A330-200 when flight crew, maintenance and
navigation costs are included. "At best, you see equal seat-mile
costs," says Leahy.'
'He concedes that if an airline wants "7,000-8,000nm range", then the
7E7's longer legs give it an advantage, but Leahy sees this
requirement as niche because "99% of the market is for 6,000nm". But
he does not expect the 7E7's much-vaunted brand-awareness exterior
shape to win it any extra orders. "Not once did an airline say to
me: 'We'd buy your aircraft if it looked better'," says Leahy.' --
Flight International, 13-Jul-04.
"[The Boeing claim that 200 7E7 orders by end-04 is possible is]
typical hype. I've never seen an airplane where the market hype from
the PR department is less in contact with the reality of the
marketplace ... Those numbers are purely a figment of the imagination
of Boeing's public relations department there in Seattle. We are in
contact with the airlines. We talk to them on a daily basis. We know
Boeing is going around and making lots of presentations, but we don't
see anyone about to place orders."
"In a wild attempt to try and keep the total trip costs down, Boeing
made their airplane a little too small. If the B767-300 was the right
size, then our A330-200 would not have 80 percent of the market ...
when you do [long range] in a tiny airplane, you get into the
economics of a corporate jet."
"Unless [Boeing] have discovered some new law of physics or some new
manufacturing process that nobody in the world has ever heard of --
and we know they have not -- then they either will be sub-optimal, in
which case they will make an airplane and it will cost them a fortune
to do it, or they will come back toward the best engineering and
manufacturing standards and build a plane with less than 30 percent
composites." -- Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 19-Jul-04.
"We are pleasantly surprised by the yawns [the 7E7] is getting in the
marketplace." -- New York Times, 20-Jul-04.
"I can't see where the big [7E7] demand is supposedly coming from. It
may be more in the category of wishful thinking than firm orders." --
Seattle Times, 21-Jul-04.
"They are talking about the 7E7, but the fact is all they do is talk
about the 7E7. I see no customer raising their hand and saying they
are going to buy it." -- Tribune Business News, 21-Jul-04.
"Admittedly you could fly further in a 7E7-8 although a lot of
airlines are saying 'I'm not quite sure I want to fly 7,500nm'. But,
we are studying that extra range capability [Boeing] have." -- Flight
"We're not replacing the A330 [with the by-then announced A350] ...
The A330 is optimized for regional flying and the A350 is optimized
for long-range flying. The 7E7 is optimized for neither." -- Wall
Street Journal, 30-Sep-04.
'Entry into service of the A350-800 would be a year after the 7E7, in
2009. "We haven't found any airline which is worried about the extra
year. I haven't seen any great momentum for 7E7-8 sales to this
"We don't want to shoot ourselves in both feet to replace the [A330]-
200/300, which between them have 80% of this element of the market.
Their Achilles' Heel is range. We solve that with the A350." --
Flight International, 19-Oct-04.
"If we bring a new airplane to market ... it will be done in response
to focus groups that we are now conducting around the industry
telling us whether or not, as a member of the A330 Family, they would
like to have an A330 with about 1,000 to 1,200 miles more range." --
Flight International, 21-Oct-04.
"We are using a lot of composite work on the [A350] wing. The gross
weight of the aircraft will be increased and it will have a 242t
maximum take-off weight." -- Flight International, 30-Nov-04.
"We are spending €4bn developing [the A350] although about €800m of
that will be risk-sharing partners."
"It is an all-new wing. If you had taken new-generation engines from
GE and Rolls-Royce which are on the 7E7 -- we have the same engines
on our aircraft -- and just added those on the A330, the weight would
have been 8t higher than it is on the A350."
"The fact that [Boeing] only have 52 [7E7 sales] means that there are
a lot of those that are teetering on the edge that we believe are
about to go in our direction. More than half of this market is going
to go to a combination of the A330 and A350."
"You will see a significant proportion of customers that Boeing
thought that they might have for the 7E7 now switching to the A350
because of performance of the aircraft." -- Reuters, 11-Dec-04.
"So far, after two years of some of the biggest market push I've ever
seen, [Boeing] have two customers." -- Dow Jones Newswires, 11-Dec-04.
'Leahy ... said [Airbus] has decided to move ahead with the A350
after nine months of consultations with customers. He said it became
clear that there was a market for a long-range lower-cost aircraft,
and Airbus decided to improve on Boeing's plans.' -- International
Herald Tribune, 11-Dec-04.
"When we approached airlines, they told us not to change the A330 but
they said they would be interested if the A330 can fly a little
further. We came up with the A350, which provides more range than the
7E7 and can carry 10 percent more passengers." -- Business Times, 20-
"We held focus group consultations with airline clients and found
they were not particularly excited with the 7E7 because it had no
commonality with other jets in the Boeing Family. So, when we
proposed a longer-range version of the A330, they welcomed it. The
A350 will belong to the same family, which means the same pilot who
flies an A330 can also fly the A350." -- The Shipping Times, 20-Dec-
"Following authority-to-offer, we're out in the market talking to
airlines. With the interest we've got we should have at least 50
orders by the Paris Air Show." -- Flight International, 21-Dec-04.
"[Boeing] need a way to claw back into a market they once controlled
[with the B767]."
"Have you seen the B-2 fly-by at almost US$1bn a copy? It has only
"I believe if [Boeing] say they're going to do it [7E7 composites],
"Boeing is in denial when they go around saying [the A350] is just a
warmed over version of the A330. If that's what it was, they'd be
selling a lot more 7E7s right now." -- Chicago Tribune, 12-Jan-05.
"Objectively, [Boeing]'ve got the high ground right now. I wanted
Korean and Northwest."
"[Boeing] seem to be doing everything they can to stop the A350 from
being an industrial launch. My job is to make sure that doesn't
"When [Boeing] say stuff like [they'll be on top in terms of orders
earned in 2005], and they start to get very aggressive on pricing,
all-of-a-sudden you get to a situation where these guys could really
turn it around this year."
"When you've got 80 percent of a given market, you aren't spending a
lot of time thinking about how to improve that position." -- Seattle
"If [Boeing] gets the first 100 [orders in the 220-300 seat segment]
it doesn't bother me [as long as Airbus catches up in the long term]."
"We have had a problem getting the plane refined and understood and
out in the market." -- Aviation Daily, 19-May-05.
"This [A350] is an all-new aircraft. Since December we improved
width, range, seat costs, economics. We changed the aircraft three or
four times in the past 90 days. We achieved an 8 tonne weight
reduction through the use of new technologies. 60 percent of the A350
structure is in advanced materials." -- Daily Post, 23-May-05.
"The fact is, it has taken us an awful long time to get the [A350]
right. We've changed the airplane three to four times [in the last 90
days.]" -- Aviation Week, 23-May-05.
"I'm not getting an airplane out there that is more than competitive
with the B787 and you will see orders very soon."
"Boeing argues they have a little more headroom on their plane, so we
changed the shape of the sidewall to have similar width."
"We have been listening to the airlines and going through the design
loops. Our customers said we should have done this a year ago. But
that's water over the dam." -- Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 3-Jun-05.
"Basically, [Boeing]'ve won the PR game."
"The guy who gets on the playing field first wins a few, [but the
A350 is] about to take over the market." -- Wall Street Journal, 10-