First of many

A few days ago I was talking about the remarkable 777 which, with well over 1,000 orders, is the best-selling twin-engine widebody in the world.

I neglected to mention a couple of other significant points. With 125 orders in 2007 alone, this is one of the strongest years in the history of the 777 program. And in the last three years, we’ve had more than 350 orders and added 16 new customers to the 777 customer base

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Qatar Airways’ new 777-300ER gets a ceremonial welcome in Doha last week after a nearly 15 hour delivery flight direct from Paine Field in Everett.

All great milestones, and just capped off with the delivery and arrival in Doha of Qatar Airways’ new flagship 777-300ER. Qatar has ordered a total of 27 777s - so this delivery is indeed just the first of many. It also happens to be the first Boeing airplane to enter Qatar’s fleet.

The 777-300ER – which entered service in May 2004 - has been a huge part of the success of the 777 program, with more than 300 orders to date.

Passengers love it for a cross-section that is - and will continue to be - the widest in the industry of any twin-aisle, twin-engine airplane - a “true” extra wide body.

Accountants love it for its efficiency and low operating costs. And maintenance and flight operations love it because it continues to have a technical dispatch reliability of more than 99%. We’re confident that Qatar and its passengers will truly love this airplane as well.

By the way, Qatar also has on order 30 787 Dreamliners. So, a big “Welcome!” is in order. We think this is just the beginning of a strong relationship between Boeing and Qatar Airways.

Comments (8)

Paulo M (Johannesburg, RSA):

I agree. I remember Jack Welch and a Boeing executive sitting in arm chairs at a press conference for the 777-300ER-GE90 Boeing-General Electric team-up several years before the first one was built. The first time I saw the 777-300ER in that striking paint scheme with the world map, I knew that there was a very special plane waiting to take to the air.

That factory shot of November 13, 2002 and unveiling the next day have been etched to my memory forever. The 777-300ER's flight test was the first I got to follow. After the A340-600 had 'dominated' the market and filled the pages of our business dailies - it was most refreshing to read how the tail-strike system, semi-levered landing gear, other new systems and design tweaks to the plane and its GE90-115B's were going to improve the take-off performance and so on. The seemingly monthly range improvements and that weight record in June 2003! It was, and continues to be a team effort of note.

When the A340-600 was spoken of, it was measured against the 747-400. The 777-300ER was not compared - which I found annoying!

From February 2000 until Q1 2007, there has been a cumulative improvement in the 777-300ER's range from the initially proposed 7,170nm (13,280km) to the currently advertised 7,930nm (14,685km) - an improvement of over 10%! Fuel capacity has remained unchanged at just over 181,000 litres. What more do you have to say to that?

ping:

Congratulations on the delivery to Doha, the world shall await eagerly on the 777 as another alternative to the a380. Keep up the good work innovating planes to keep the world more connected.

Buzz (Brazil):

Being a marketing professional I, first of all, really believe this initiative is a great tool to comunicate with the market. I believe every company should do the same.

Also, talking about customers and showing their importance is very important. Relationships are not only important for persons, but also for companies. And if there is one thing Boeing is extremely good in doing is building and maintaining relationships.

One example is GOL, Brazil's most successful LCC.
Qatar seems to be going in the same direction. And there is a number of other companies I could number (Even suppliers like MHI from Japan) which have a long date and highly profitable relationship with Boeing.

Norman (Long Beach, California, United States):

I love that B777-300ER - it's my favorite twin engine
wide body airliner, I think it's awesome that over
300 examples have been ordered. I hope that a U.S.
airline like Northwest, United, or Continental Airlines will some day order the airliner.

I think one of the primary factors in the success
of the B777-300ER is that It is a lot lighter at 775,000 pounds MTOW compared to the Airbus A340-600 at 840.000 pounds MTOW for the the same seating capacity and slightly more range 7,800 to 7,500 miles (Gerard Frawley,The International Directory of Civil Aircraft 2001/2002 p.25,64 2001).

Other factors include the simpler landing gear than the A340, two six wheel main units rather than three four wheel main units, the middle unit adds weight and higher maintenance costs, one other advantage the B777-300ER has over the A340-600 is lower maintenance costs, maintaining two engines is less expensive than maintaining four engines, and last but not least the A340 comes as a derivative of the A300 essentially the airframe is from the late sixties, the 777's airframe is from the nineties.

I like the fact that the Middle East is not just a Airbus strong hold as it was in the nineties and the early two-thousands, I am glad to see the Boeing 777 and the 787 sell well in the Middle East, congrats to Emirates Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Etihad Airways.

I hope Boeing will in the next year will proceed with
the B787-10. I think there is a demand for such a plane as the older B777-200's and A340's begin to retire from the top international airlines. It would be a good competitor to the Airbus A350-900, I read
Emirates is still looking at the 787 stretch model even after they purchased the A350, I would look at
Northwest Airlines as they have ordered the 787-8 and
its 747 fleet is getting old.

Paulo M (Johannesburg, RSA):

Congratulations on the Boeing 777 Freighter design milestone. That should allay concerns about stretched engineering resources.

Earlier this year, I had a good look at the figures for the "heavy weights" in the airliner business. At first it's easy brushing the twin aside from the more established American and Russian types out there - and maybe for good reason. In my opinion, the 777 Freighter is the single most important development in the airline cargo market since the first 747-200 freighters, which entered service with Lufthansa all those years back.

Sure, the 777 is not designed for outsized loads, which are easily loaded into a 747, An-124, An-225 or C-5 - all of which have visors. It's not a military aircraft - it's a airplane, like the 747, designed for the commercial market, where government funding/support is fading. Thus, it is indeed quite interesting noting how far the 777 Freighter will take a 100 tonne payload - especially when compared with the mighty Antonov An-225. Obviously there is quite a gap in technology between the Boeing twin and the Antonov six-engined giant - not to mention the size difference and mission requirements delta. But it's a noteworthy comparison when thinking about the "dead weight" on the A380 Freighter that Randy Baseler nailed so perfectly.

I think that the 777 Freighter is going to rearrange the top order in the cargo market quite substantially - not to take anything away from what the 747 freighter has achieved thus far. I'm always in awe over comparisons between the 747 and its 1970's peers such as the C-5 and it's more recent likes such as the An-124 - the 747 has changed substatially over the years.

The introduction of the 747-8F brings a more realistic differentiation in terms of size and capability between the 777 and 747. But both perfectly underscore a classic Boeing trait - leadership in payload/range systems, that are consistently more capable, cleaner, more efficient and cheaper to fly.

Flyingman (Versailles (France)):

I'm a globetrotter-businessman, and, i'm sorry to inform you that i like the B777, but i flew with many different kind of aircraft, and the B777(specialy the 300-ER) is the NOISYEST plane,i ever take...

Amazingly, at the opposite, the A380 is the MOST SILENCIOUS i ever take...

Sorry Yankees...But i'm i tell you the thought...

Happy new year.

Phil Cook (GB):

Boeing achieving 1,000 orders for it's 777 model and is indeed a production milestone.

However to quote the 777 series as the best selling widebody at 1,000 airframes is not quite correct.

As of 23/12/2007 the Airbus A300 series orders total is quoted as 1,668 airframes.

--------

Phil,

Don't know where your numbers break out. But here's what we see through year end 2007 :

777 series: 1,044
767: 1,011
787: 817

A300/A310: 821
A330: 835

Perhaps you were combining the A300/310 and A330 in your calculations. They're different airplanes. All they share is the same "narrow" fuselage.

- Randy Tinseth

Phil Cook (GB):

Randy,

Your assumption was indeed correct in that I was indeed basing my figures on the Airbus's twin aisle wide body fuselage of both the A300/310 & A330 series in it's various guises and as a result of your clarity now stand suitably chastised and corrected.

Thank you

Phil

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