Airbus confirms A380 superjumbo delay

1st June 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 1 (AFP) - The European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said on Wednesday that it would be two to six months late in delivering its new superjumbo A380 airliner to airlines.

PARIS, June 1 (AFP) - The European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said on Wednesday that it would be two to six months late in delivering its new superjumbo A380 airliner to airlines.  

The delay raises the risk of financial penalties on the European consortium for late delivery, but Airbus declined to comment on any such penalty clauses in its contracts.   The aircraft, the biggest airliner ever built with capacity for 550 to 840 passengers, successfully made its maiden test flight at the end of April.  

Airbus spokeswoman Barbara Kracht told AFP that the airliners would be delivered with a delay of "two to six months depending on the case" and that: "We are in the process of reviewing the timetable. We are informing all of our customers."  

Airbus has taken 144 orders, and 10 options, from 15 airlines at a catalogue price of USD 263-286 million (EUR 213.8 million – EUR 232.5 million) each.  

The EADS aerospace group owns 80 percent of Airbus which generates most of its sales. The prices of shares in EADS was showing a fall of 1.66 percent to EUR 23.63 at mid-day.  

In Dubai, the Emirates airline said it was waiting for a confirmation Airbus of a possible delay in delivery of 43 A380 aircraft.   "We are awaiting for a confirmation from Airbus of a delay in the delivery of A-380s," spokesman John Tome told AFP.  

Emirates has placed the biggest order for the long-haul airliner.   "We are expecting a word from Airbus within the next one to two weeks about the plant's delivery schedule," Tome said citing earlier remarks by Emirates' president Tim Clark.  

Clark was not surprised about a delay "which he described as a common occurance in aircraft industry," Tome said.  

"A delay of few months will not be a huge problem for Emirates if it is known of in advance," he added.  

In Paris, Air France said on Wednesday that Airbus had told it that A380 airliners it had ordered would be delivered late.  

It was to have received the first of the airliners in April of 2007. An Air France spokeswoman said: "Airbus has told us of a delay in delivery of the A380. We are talking to Airbus to work out the delay."  

Air France has ordered 10 of the airliners and has an option for four more.   The Australian airline Qantas had said earlier on Wednesday that deliveries to it of A380 airliners would be delayed by at least six months.  

Qantas head Geoff Dixon said that the first of the 12 superjumbo aircraft ordered by the airline had been delayed from October 2006 to April 2007, and said that his company would seek damages in accordance with terms in its contract.  

Qantas was the second airline to have reported a delay of deliveries after Singapore Airlines, the first company to order the new aircraft.  

Singapore Airlines had said at the beginning of May that that the first of its planes would now be delivered in the second half of 2006 instead of in the first half. It now expects delivery in the last quarter of 2006.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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