EADS' (stock exchange symbol: EAD) subsidiary Airbus has completed the A380 programme review and is now informing customers about changes to its delivery schedule. The review assessed the programme status at the critical juncture of transitioning from low rate "individual" production, so-called Wave 1, to the full serial design and manufacturing process, called Wave 2.
Overall, the recovery programme, initiated in summer 2006, is progressing well. Four aircraft were delivered as planned and are performing very well in airline operations on long-range routes. Seventeen aircraft are in various stages of production, mainly in the wiring installation and system testing phases. Most aircraft earmarked for delivery in 2008 have already flown.
However, the review has also shown that the steep ramp-up planned in 2006 is not fully achievable. Time and resources needed for Wave 1 production aircraft are higher than expected, and this has created some delay in the changeover to Wave 2 with its new design and manufacturing process.
As a result, Airbus plans now for 12 (instead of 13) deliveries in 2008 and
21 (instead of 25) in 2009. Details about the new plan and the further
ramp-up and delivery slots in 2010 and the following years will be discussed with customers in the coming weeks.
The results of this review do not, at this stage, cover the financial impact. The extent of the additional costs will be influenced by the actual production and delivery scenario. This will follow discussions with the customers and a more precise evaluation of the implications of the new delivery schedule for 2010 deliveries and beyond. This will therefore take some more time to determine.
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