Powerful aviation executive still not enchanté with A350
Boeing got a PR bonus Tuesday, courtesy of International Lease Finance Corp.'s CEO, Steve Udvar-Hazy. After endorsing the 787 Dreamliner...
Boeing got a PR bonus Tuesday, courtesy of International Lease Finance Corp.'s CEO, Steve Udvar-Hazy. After endorsing the 787 Dreamliner, he continued his public spat with Airbus over its manufacturing plan for the rival A350 jet.
Hazy reiterated his preference for Boeing's approach of building the 787 fuselage in massive, tube-shaped sections.
"We're much more comfortable with what we've seen with the Boeing design," Hazy said.
On Monday, Airbus CEO Louis Gallois said emphatically his company won't change its plan to build the A350 fuselage out of composite panels attached to an aluminum frame.
But a day later, the influential Hazy refused to back down. He said ILFC has been pushing Airbus for an alternative to its current plan, looking for "an optimized solution such as using a composite frame" to hold the fuselage panels.
And Hazy clearly isn't ready to take 'non' for an answer from Airbus.
"Airbus is seriously evaluating all of those issues," Hazy said. "The lead times are sufficiently long enough to the first [plane] that they can still make some design adaptations."
Hazy had just flown into Paris on his private jet, accompanied by his two sons.
He said he'll meet with Gallois privately today. It should be a very interesting discussion.
— Dominic Gates
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