Lufthansa to decide Airbus A380 fate soon; pushes A350 deliveries

Santi Rodriguez /

The fate of Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA)’s remaining Airbus A380 fleet will be decided soon, as the airline also looks to permanently retire other wide-body aircraft, including the Airbus A340 and the Boeing 747-400.

Seven A380s were already phased out of the German company’s fleet, as well as 11 Airbus A320s and five Boeing 747-400 aircraft. However, the remaining two 747-400s and 17 Airbus A340-600s are also under threat. The chief executive of the group Carsten Spohr has stated that the only four-engine aircraft with a long-term future is the Boeing 747-8. The newest version of the Queen of the Skies joined Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA)’s fleet in 2012 and the airline now owns 19 units of the 747-8.

To replace the outgoing wide-bodies, the company is in active negotiations with Airbus to push-forward Airbus A350 deliveries, but Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) would only take in the A350s with its newest business class product on board. Deliveries of the Boeing 777X, according to Spohr, are expected to start in Q2 2022, possibly delaying the folding-wingtip derivative of the 777 by another six months.

Initially, Boeing was supposed to handover the 777X to Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) in 2020.

A total of around 26,000 layoffs are planned at the airline group, instead of the 22,000 that were indicated in July 2020, despite a $9.8 billion (€9 billion) state aid package. Unions, including Vereinigung Cockpit and UFO, made concessions to save jobs at the carrier.


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