Boeing Rendering of the 777-8X and 777-9X
Boeing made good on expectations of a huge splash of orders at Dubai 2013 today by booking 259 orders and commitments for the 777X part 2 of Boeing's two prong strategy against Airbus' A350.
The 777X is meant to directly challenge the A350-1000 (Boeing says the 777-8X is a direct challenger to the A350-1000) and any potential stretch of this aircraft to over 400 seats. Emirates came in big with an order for 115 777-9X and 35 777-8X, the later is really an extended range version of the 777-300ER. Etihad ordered 17 777-9X and 8 777-8X while Qatar signed an LoI for 50 777-9X. What is unknown at this time is weather the Etihad and Emirates orders are firm or not.
Additionally Etihad ordered the 787-10 taking orders for the type to 120 and total orders for the 787 family to 1,012. It does seem that this order may be firm. Along with the 41 787-9s on order, Etihad is on track to be the largest airline customer of the 787. ILFC is the largest 787 customer with 74 airplanes on order with 5 already delivered.
Boeing wasn't done as FlyDubai also went big and ordered 100 737-8 MAX and 11 737-800. Overall a huge day for Boeing and I suspect that it's not over for them. I expect that Boeing will more orders to announce from non Gulf carriers and may include Cathay Pacific as another customer for the 777X.
Airbus tried to make a splash but really came up with another yawn order of 50 A380 for Emirates. The A380 has a large exposure to just one carrier and truly doesn't bode well for the aircraft as it has unable to penetrate other airlines and diversify its customer base. The re-sale market for this aircraft is extremely limited.
After Day 1 at Dubai 2013 here's the scoreboard:
Emirates - 50 x A380 (yawn)
Etihad - 40 x A350-900, 10 x A350-1000, 10 x A320 NEO, 26 x A321 NEO + 30 options on A350 and A320/A321 NEO
Qatar - 5 x A330-200F (8 options)
Emirates - 35 x 777-8X, 115 x 777-9X + 50 options
Etihad - 8 x 777-8X, 17 x 777-9X, 30 x 787-10, 1 x 777F + 12 x 777X options/purchase rights, 12 x 787-10 options/purchase rights, 2 x 777F options/purchase rights
FlyDubai - 11 x 737-800, 100 x 737-8 MAX
Lufthansa - 34 x 777-9X
Qatar - 50 x 777-9X (LoI)