EADS has put back the launch of the Airbus A350 by six months and said that delay will cost it around 200 million euros.
That trimmed its third-quarter profits but they did come in better than expected with net income at 312 million euros.
The lightweight mid-sized A350 is Europe’s answer to the carbon-composite Boeing 787 Dreamliner and Airbus says it has learned from past mistakes with the much delayed A380 and has now stabilised costs on the troublesome superjumbo project.
Airbus parent EADS said the A350 would enter service in the first half of 2014 instead of late 2013. It pushed the start of the first final assembly back three months to the first quarter of 2012.
Europe’s largest aerospace group also raised its outlook for the year which helped lift its shares.
Despite the economic storm clouds over developed economies, Airbus and Boeing who dominate the commercial aircraft market are boosting output to meet demand from Asia and the Middle East.
“I am confident the commercial aircraft market will sustain our growth in years to come despite the weakening of the macro-economic environment and particularly of the European economies,” Finance Director Hans Peter Ring told reporters.
“Fifty percent of our backlog is in growing regions of the world and not in Europe or the U.S….so provided there isn’t a big double-dip recession we think it is manageable for us.”