Together with its Q3 2019 financial results, Boeing has clarified the future of its wide-body planes, officially confirming what Emirates CEO Tim Clark had previously hinted. Boeing has pushed back the 777X entry into service date to 2021.
777X service entry pushed to 2021
Boeing states the 777X program is progressing through pre-flight testing and the first flight of the new Triple Seven “remains on track” in early 2020. However, what does not remain on track is its entry into service date. Previously expected in 2020, now the first delivery date has been to early 2021.
Emirates, which has ordered 150 of the newest generation Triple Sevens, previously expected to take the first delivery in June 2020 and receive a total of eight 777Xs by the end of 2020. However, since September 2019, the airline’s CEO has expressed an increasing skepticism on whether Boeing would be able to meet the deadline. In October 2019, speaking at The Aviation Show MEASA 2019, Clark said that it no longer looked like they would have any 777X jets in 2020.
The last update Boeing provided on the 777X program was back in July 2019. At the time, the manufacturer was still hopeful to make the first delivery in 2020. However, Boeing was already cautious when describing the probability to meet the deadline, by warning of a “significant” risk to that schedule due to the challenges with the GE9X engines. According to reports, General Electric is in the process of redesigning a component on the GE9X – a stator vane in the second stage of the high-pressure compressor.
Boeing to lower 787 production rate
“Given the current global trade environment, the 787 production rate will be reduced to 12 airplanes per month for approximately two years beginning in late 2020,” the manufacturer has also revealed.