Airbus’ Commercial Aircraft deliveries were up for the 15th year in a row in 2017, reaching a new company record of 718 aircraft delivered to 85 customers.
Deliveries were more than four per cent higher than the previous record of 688 set in 2016.
The 2017 total comprises: 558 single aisle A320 Family (of which 181 were A320neo – an increase of 166 per cent over 2016); 67 A330s; 78 A350 XWBs (up by nearly 60 per cent from 2016) and 15 A380s.
Furthermore, to cap this resounding annual production achievement, Airbus achieved 1,109 net orders from 44 customers.
At the end of 2017 Airbus’ overall backlog stood at 7,265 aircraft valued at US$1.059 trillion at list prices.
Fabrice Brégier, Airbus president, Commercial Aircraft, commented: “A new Airbus delivery record coupled with our fifth best order intake wraps up a remarkable year for us.
“This outstanding achievement is testimony to the dedication of all our teams, and makes the company fitter, stronger and ready for the opportunities ahead.”
On a more downbeat note, Airbus said the A380 programme might have to end if Emirates could not be signed to a new deal.
The manufacturer confirmed it would build 12 A380s in 2018 and a further eight in 2019, with stating it was prepared to build a minimum of six planes a year after that.
However, buyers remain scared.
Speaking as the results were announced, Leahy said negotiations for Emirates to buy more of the superjumbo were ongoing.
“We are still talking to Emirates and quite honestly they are probably the only one in the marketplace who can take a minimum of six A380s a year for a period of eight to ten years,” he said.
“If we cannot work out a deal with Emirates I think there is no choice but to shut down the program.”
With this year’s performance Airbus has steadily built on deliveries year on year – with 15 consecutive years of production increase.
From its four A320 Family plants in Hamburg, Tianjin, Mobile, and Toulouse, Airbus is on track to achieve rate 60 per month on single-aisle by mid-2019.
Meanwhile, the A350 XWB is equally on track for rate ten by the end 2018.
Airbus’ healthy order intake in 2017 resulted in a ‘book-to-bill’ ratio of 1.5.
Also today, Airbus said it would increase the average list prices of its aircraft by two percent across the product line.
Leahy concluded: “Our new 2018 pricing reflects Airbus’ continuous investments into its aircraft programmes to maximise their value for our customers’ satisfaction – with the winning combination of performance, operating economics and passenger experience.”