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Airbus to downsize A380 production


Airbus to downsize A380 production


Airbus is planning to build fewer of its A380 superjumbos.

It will slow assembly to one aircraft per month from 2018, saying that was to allow it to “smooth deliveries pending new orders”.

Currently it turns out five of the giant aircraft every two months.

The European planemaker is struggling to revive sales of the world’s largest passenger jet.

Singapore Airlines recently said it will not extend the lease on its first A380 when it expires next year. It has 19 of them and five more on order.

And Australia’s Qantas – which has eight – does not want the eight more it has ordered.

But Alain Flourens, who heads the A380 programme, told French newspaper Le Figaro: “The A380 still has a place in the Airbus product portfolio.”

Airbus has said the double-decker is still attractive because it believes it helps to solve airport congestion and growing air traffic.

But sales of large four-engine airliners like the 544-seat A380 have been hit hard by improvements in the range and efficiency of smaller two-engined models, which can be easier to fill.

Flourens added that Airbus has plans to improve the plane’s efficiency.

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