I normally don’t talk much about cargo aircraft – as passengers – we have little interest in them. However, this order is worth nothing, as it throws a lifeline to the Boeing 747-8 programme.
UPS today has excised an option it had in its original order for 14 more Boeing 747-8F aircraft to be added to their fleet. This will bring the UPS 747-8F fleet to 28 of the type.
UPS will also add four new Boeing 767 Freighters to is fleet too, adding capacity to the UPS Fleet.
In the quotes, UPS Airlines President Brendan Canavan states:
“As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of UPS Airlines today, we are seeing unprecedented demand for our air products,”
“The new freighters will allow us to continue upsizing aircraft on routes and will create a cascading effect that will boost capacity on regional routes around the world.”
Meanwhile Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO Kevin McAllister stats
“UPS has clearly tapped into the power and efficiency the 747-8 Freighter brings to the market,”
“We’re impressed with how UPS is leveraging the airplane in its operations, and also excited to see them bring additional 767s into their fleet.”
So why is an order like this important? In simple terms – it keeps the production line open. It gives Boeing the chance to sell more of the type out there – be it passenger or cargo variants.
The 747-8F has been a far better cargo seller than the passenger version – with 103 orders for the Freighter vs the 47 for passenger aircraft (the 747-8I).
And the chance to keep on selling the iconic 747 will be one the manufacturer can’t afford to lose.
With both Airbus and Boeing suffering with poor sales of their very large aircraft (and both saved by “angel” orders like these), it’s a chance for companies to build on these orders.
A slim chance that airlines will go to the manufactures to pick up these very large aircraft.
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