Airbus has announced that it will cease production of the double-deck A380 in two years time.
As part of its 2018 year-end earnings statement, Airbus said: "Following a review of its operations, and in light of developments in aircraft and engine technologies, Emirates is reducing its A380 orderbook from 162 to 123 aircraft... As a consequence and given the lack of order backlog with other airlines, Airbus will cease deliveries of the A380 in 2021."
Airbus Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders added: "As a result of this decision we have no substantial A380 backlog and hence no basis to sustain production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years. This leads to the end of A380 deliveries in 2021."
Emirates will take delivery of a further 14 A380s over the next two years, increasing its fleet from 109 to 123. A further 39 that the Middle Eastern carrier had ordered - either firmly or provisionally - will not be produced.
Production of A380s will cease in 2021 after delivery of a further 14 to Emirates and three to ANA. (Laurent ERRERA)
Along with ongoing deliveries to Emirates, Airbus is currently in the midst of handing over three A380s to Japanese airline All Nippon Airways (ANA). However, other outstanding commitments to the type from Hong Kong Airlines (10) Qantas (8) and Virgin Atlantic (6) have been cancelled during the last year. This only leaves doubtful orders for 20 A380s from leasing firm Amadeo and three from Air Accord on the books.
Six of Emirates' additional 14 A380s are already largely complete while assembly of another six has commenced. Even with production reduced to six per annum, the outstanding backlog leaves the way clear for the line to be closed in 2021.
Text © The Aviation Oracle