Boeing could push 777X ahead of 787-10

  • Bloomberg News
  • Wednesday, March 13, 2013 7:14am
  • Business

The Boeing Co. is speeding up efforts for upgrades of the twin-aisle 777 jet, including a roomier interior, raising the possibility that the revised model will be introduced before the stretch version of the 787.

“On the 777-X, things are accelerating,” Randy Tinseth, Boeing’s marketing chief, said in an interview yesterday at the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading conference in Orlando. Boeing last week named Bob Feldman as the head of the program, which “shows how important this project is and that we’re making good progress,” Tinseth said.

Boeing plans to widen the interior of the 777’s fuselage, give it new engines and enlarge the wing, building it out of composite materials instead of aluminum. Customers including Emirates airline, the biggest 777 buyer, have urged Chicago- based Boeing to commit quickly to the 777-X, which is targeted to enter service by decade’s end.

The 787 has been grounded by U.S. regulators since Jan. 16 because of battery flaws. Boeing has said that it planned to offer the 787-10, which it calls a simple stretch of the 787-9, before it begins selling the 777-X. Tinseth yesterday left open the possibility of a change in that order.

“When it comes to the 787 right now, we’re focused on getting that plane back in the air, and until we do, other things take a back seat,” he said. Of the two models’ upcoming variants, “which one gets launched first or second, we’ll just have to see how that plays out,” Tinseth said.

The 777 is Boeing’s biggest twin-engine model, with a top list price of $315 million. The largest of the current versions seats about 450 passengers.

Bigger Cabin

“We think there’s ways to provide more space and a bigger cabin for the customer without changing the outside dimensions of the airplane” as far as width goes, Tinseth said. “We’re looking for a more comfortable 10-abreast.”

The plane will be lengthened, and Boeing is still consulting with airlines to determine how many seat rows to add.

“The configuration is looking good,” Tinseth said. “The big question is affordability and the business case, making it affordable for us to build and the airlines to buy.”

Boeing with the upgraded 777 is vying to keep its lead over Airbus SAS in twin-aisle jets as the European planemaker develops its competing A350.

Airlines that operate the current 777, and are anxious for improvements in range and fuel efficiency, have been watching closely over the past year as Boeing has pushed back its plans to begin offering the plane. Former Boeing Commercial Airlines President Jim Albaugh said a year ago that he’d seek board approval for the 777-X by the end of 2012.

Green Light

Tim Clark, chief executive officer of Dubai-based Emirates, said in February that he didn’t expect Boeing to start selling the plane for another six to nine months, which would put its official go-ahead about a year behind plan. Last week, however, he said he now expects Boeing’s board to give a green light within weeks.

Boeing generally seeks the board’s authority to offer a new model to airlines first and then, once it has customers lined up, commits to producing the plane, which is called the “launch.” The board gave its initial authority to offer the 787-10 late last year, allowing Boeing to start trying to line up customers.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Business

The Westwood Rainier is one of the seven ships in the Westwood line. The ships serve ports in the Pacific Northwest and Northeast Asia. (Photo provided by Swire Shipping)
Westwood Shipping Lines, an Everett mainstay, has new name

The four green-hulled Westwood vessels will keep their names, but the ships will display the Swire Shipping flag.

Lead climbers head up their respective routes at Vertical World North on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Beginner’s ascent: A newcomer’s guide to indoor climbing

Indoor climbing gyms in and around Snohomish County offer thrills without winter chills.

Alexis Burroughs holds a bigleaf maple leaf while guiding her participants through sensory observation during a forest bathing session Sunday, Nov. 19, 2023, at Lord Hill Regional Park near Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
To restore human bond with nature, locals lead forest bathing sessions

A yoga instructor in Bothell and Adopt a Stream in Everett say the meditative practice evokes emotion, health benefits.

Instructor Gael Gebow checks her stopwatch while tracking her group’s exercises during her Boot Camp fitness class Monday, Nov. 13, 2023, at the YMCA in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
YMCA fitness instructor challenges, empowers Everett residents

Gael Gebow has made inclusivity and healthy living her focus in 23 years at the YMCA.

A view of the Broadway construction site of Compass Health’s new mental health facility on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Compass Health dedicates Everett block to housing and behavioral health services

The “state-of-the-art” project is set to total over $90M. The nonprofit has asked for public support.

More than 150 people attend a ribbon cutting event on Nov. 16, 2023 celebrating the completion of Innovation Hall at the University of Washington Bothell and Cascadia College campus. The building, which highlights STEM instruction and research, opens to students in January. Credit: Tara Brown Photography/UW Bothell
New science, math facility opens in January at UW Bothell

Innovation Hall is the first new building to be constructed at the Bothell university campus in 10 years.

Everett
Rairdon Auto Group acquires Pignataro VW in Everett

Everett VW dealership is the 12th for the Rairdon Group, which marks 30 years in business this year.

A Keyport ship docked at Lake Union in Seattle in June 2018. The ship spends most of the year in Alaska harvesting Golden King crab in the Bering Sea. During the summer it ties up for maintenance and repairs at Lake Union. (Keyport LLC)
In crabbers’ turbulent moment, Edmonds seafood processor ‘saved our season’

When a processing plant in Alaska closed, Edmonds-based business Keyport stepped up to solve a “no-win situation.”

Angela Harris, Executive Director of the Port of Edmonds, stands at the port’s marina on Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2024, in Edmonds, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Leadership, love for the Port of Edmonds got exec the job

Shoring up an aging seawall is the first order of business for Angela Harris, the first woman to lead the Edmonds port.

The Cascade Warbirds fly over Naval Station Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald file)
Bothell High School senior awarded $2,500 to keep on flying

Cascade Warbirds scholarship helps students 16-21 continue flight training and earn a private pilot’s certificate.

Rachel Gardner, the owner of Musicology Co., a new music boutique record store on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2024 in Edmonds, Washington. Musicology Co. will open in February, selling used and new vinyl, CDs and other music-related merchandise. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
New Edmonds record shop intends to be a ‘destination for every musician’

Rachel Gardner opened Musicology Co. this month, filling a record store gap in Edmonds.

MyMyToyStore.com owner Tom Harrison at his brick and mortar storefront on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Burst pipe permanently closes downtown Everett toy store

After a pipe flooded the store, MyMyToystore in downtown Everett closed. Owner Tom Harrison is already on to his next venture.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.