Boeing Studies Dual 737 Replacement


#1

I noticed that there have been periodic discussions on whether Boeing would enter the regional jet market. Below is an excerpt from an official Boeing press release.

The full article is at:
http://news.airwise.com/story/view/1158243835.html

September 14, 2006
Boeing is weighing options for replacing its best-selling 737 and one scenario might include separate aircraft for two markets, the company’s senior marketing official said.

Boeing currently does not manufacture a regional jet, a market dominated by Canada’s Bombardier and Brazil’s Embraer. Boeing would also compete with any changes by Europe’s Airbus, which now makes the A320 to compete with the 737.

Baseler said Boeing first must determine whether it should replace the 737 – one for one – with another one-class single-aisle aircraft. He said the company is studying the 80 and 90-seat market and what regional jet manufacturers are planning for 100-seat aircraft.

“It could end up being it doesn’t make any sense for us being in the 90 or 100-seat market,” Baseler said.


#2

COUGH 717!

I understand that there were a few things that Boeing wasn’t happy about regarding the 717 (cockpit dissimilar to other 7x7s, different parts compared to other planes), but didn’t they just kill off their only 100 seat airplane? And now they’re talking about “getting into the market?” I mean, honestly, it hasn’t been 4 months since they delivered their last 717?

All they needed to do was retool the 717 (get parts that are consistant across their platforms, redo the cockpit) and put out some shorter versions to compete in the RJ market. I dunno, something tells me that, if they had put a little more effort into the 717, they wouldn’t be wasting their time with stuff like this. Instead they’ll waste millions upon millions of dollars doing R&D for effectively the same product.


#3

I was thinking the same thing. The 717 is a pretty damn good little airplane. AirTran seems to love ‘em, and they’re one of the few airlines that actually made money pretty much all the way through the 9/11 fallout. It’s much more than a DC-9. It’s something like 24% less thirsty. That’s a lot of kerosene!! I must venture to guess that an E-190 must be more efficient yet (lighter)?
Obviously, the sales figures didn’t add up to Boeing continually making a profit from the 717, which “justified” killing the line. I don’t know *how *it could be cheaper to start over from scratch than to “tune up” such a work horse with a very successful history. The 735, and especially the 736, didn’t come close to their sales expectations, mainly because of their weight. How about a modified 717 (as you presented) using composite materials a la the 787?? Expensive to buy, but cheap to fly!! Using such technology is about the only way I can think of Boeing competing with the lighter, less expensive RJs that already have a huge share of the airlines’ fleets in their sales books.


#4

the DC-9 series suffers from the Not Invented Here syndrome at Boeing. The MD-80/90 series makes alot of sense. The DC-9(10) was the first regional jet carried 75 I believe. They could simply retool, get cockpit commonality and have themselves a regional jet by shrinking the 717 to DC-9-(10) size.