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Airbus moves up launch date of revamped A320

Airbus plans to bring forward by six months the entry into service of its revamped A320 jetliner, seen as key to battling Boeing and fending off emerging rivals in the largest aircraft segment. Get the full story »

Boeing, Airbus brace for U.S. tanker decision

The U.S. Air Force prepared on Thursday to announce the winner of an epic $35 billion procurement battle between Boeing and Airbus over 179 aerial refueling planes, its third attempt to start replacing a fleet of planes built before humans first landed on the moon.

Less than a dozen top Air Force and Pentagon officials know the outcome of a price shootout that saw both companies submit very aggressive offers, but which analysts increasingly expect Airbus parent EADS to win. Get the full story »

Airbus calls for Boeing 747-8 evacuation test

Chicago-based Boeing Co. should be obliged by U.S. civil aviation authorities to conduct an emergency evacuation test of its new 747-8 Intercontinental, a senior Airbus executive said Wednesday.

The 747-8, a stretched version of the 747-400, was rolled out over the weekend at Boeing’s plant outside Seattle. It will carry 467 passengers, 51 more than the current version of the jumbo jet, offering airlines a lower cost-per-seat mile. Get the full story »

Boeing prepares ‘final’ bid for Air Force tanker

Boeing Co. said Tuesday that it would submit a “final” bid for a $35 billion contract to supply the U.S. military with 179 aerial refueling tankers, as it tries to beat European rival Airbus.

A Boeing spokesman said the firm and  Air Force officials discussed the company’s proposal Monday and revisions would follow. Get the full story »

China to seek FAA certification of passenger jet

China’s top aviation regulator said Friday that it aimed to work jointly with U.S. authorities on certifying the planned new C919 passenger jet.

The aircraft is seen as the first shot in China’s effort to break the duopoly in large civil aircraft held by Airbus and Boeing Co.  and securing approval from overseas regulators will be crucial in finding customers outside the country’s fast-growing domestic market. Get the full story »

WTO set to issue findings on Boeing subsidies

The World Trade Organization will issue a confidential final ruling Jan. 31 concerning European claims that Boeing benefited from unfair aircraft subsidies, sources familar with the case said on Friday.

The report, which will not be made public for several weeks, is the latest round of legal Ping-Pong between the European Union and United States over mutual claims their aircraft industries have been unfairly shielded from competition. Get the full story »

Airbus lands record $16 billion IndiGo order

Airbus on Tuesday announced what it called the biggest jet order in commercial aviation history with a $15.6 billion deal to sell 180 planes to Indian budget carrier IndiGo including the first orders for a revamped model.

The deal comes as the European planemaker tallies its plane orders for 2010, but will not enter the order book in time to decide whether Airbus will come from behind to win a fiercely contested annual battle for most sales against Chicago-based Boeing. Get the full story »

Boeing, Airbus net big orders for narrow-body jets

Boeing Co. and Airbus SAS are ringing in the the new year with large aircraft order announcements for their popular narrow-body jets.

Finance company CIT Group Inc. ordered 38 next-generation Boeing 737s worth about $3.2 billion at list price. This is the largest order CIT has placed with Chicago-based Boeing and a sign the commercial lender intends to remain a player in the aircraft leasing business after emerging from bankruptcy last year. Get the full story »

Jet suppliers cite potential gain from Airbus move

Aircraft suppliers Rockwell Collins and Goodrich said on Thursday they could gain new business as a result of this week’s announcement that EADS unit Airbus would upgrade its A320 plane with better engines that offer 15 percent fuel savings.

Airbus, the world’s largest plane maker, said it would spend roughly $1.3 billion to improve efficiency of the narrowbody aircraft. Its main rival Boeing is also mulling whether to upgrade its competing 737 plane. Get the full story »

Sources: Airbus, Boeing mull further output hikes

Airbus and Boeing have begun sounding out suppliers on their ability to cope with further production increases of their most popular jets, taking combined output well above 80 a month within four to five years.

Three senior industry sources told Reuters consultations had started on a historic upswing which could see Airbus producing as many as 44 A320 single-aisle planes by 2014 or 2015 and its rival simultaneously rising to as many as 42 737s a month. Get the full story »

Pentagon: ‘Clerical error’ won’t hurt tanker bid

Bloomberg | Chicago-based Boeing Co. and European Aeronautic, Defense and Space Co. shouldn’t see any significant fallout from a “clerical error” releasing some data on their bids for a $35 billion aerial tanker program, the Defense Department said. The Air Force disclosed Nov. 19 that the service mistakenly provided Boeing and EADS with “a limited amount” of data on the offers that are now under government review.

Air Force data misstep could delay tanker contract again

The Air Force has again stumbled in the lucrative but long-drawn-out competition for air refueling tankers for which Airbus and Boeing are contending.

The Air Force told members of Congress on Friday that about two weeks ago it accidentally provided Chicago-based Boeing with detailed data on the Airbus bid, and vice versa. Get the full story »

Air France negotiating with Boeing about aircraft

Franco-Dutch airline Air France-KLM said Wednesday it expects to place an order for about 100 new wide-bodied aircraft soon as it anticipates its capacity needs for the middle of this decade and beyond.

The airline is in negotiations with Boeing Co. and its European rival Airbus, and the talks should be completed in the coming weeks or months, Chief Financial Officer Philippe Calavia said on the sidelines of a press conference.

Rolls-Royce to swap out, repair leaky A380 engines

Rolls-Royce will temporarily replace engines that have oil leaks on the world’s largest jetliner after one motor disintegrated midair, an aviation regulator told The Associated Press on Monday.

The official said the British engine-maker would take off faulty engines and replace them with new ones. It will then fix the leaking part and swap the engine back again. Get the full story »

FAA implements rules on structural fatigue checks

Commercial aircraft manufacturers and airlines must take new steps to protect thousands of jets from serious structural fatigue as they age, according to a rule finalized Friday by U.S. aviation regulators.

The Federal Aviation Administration is requiring manufacturers, including industry leaders Boeing Co. and Airbus, a unit of Europe’s EADS, and airlines to intensify and streamline inspections of the metal skeleton and skin of aircraft. Get the full story »