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Airbus A380 production to end

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  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Sydney, Australia
Airbus A380 production to end
Posted by Phil_H on Thursday, February 14, 2019 4:42 AM

Airbus has announced that A380 deliveries will end in 2021.

The European plane maker said Thursday that it will stop delivering A380s in 2021 after its key customer, Dubai-based airline Emirates, slashed its orders for the world's largest airliner. 


  • Member since
    May, 2011
  • From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Posted by Real G on Thursday, February 14, 2019 10:11 AM

I saw some at Heathrow and they were magnificent beasts!  A Japanese carrier (ANA) is planning on bringing them to Honolulu; the last time I was at HNL I noticed that a jetway had been installed on the third level.  I asked around and was told that it was for the A380s.  A friend who is a civil engineer who does frequent work at the airport remarked that the apron will need to be replaced with thicker concrete, as the current one is insufficient to bear the weight.  Fortunately the taxiways and runway can handle it.

I have the Revell kit, so maybe someone will do decals for a Japanese ANA A380.  Doyusha reboxed Zvezda’s 787 with JAL decals, and included a number jungle, so I plan on building the plane I flew in.

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Thursday, February 14, 2019 10:15 AM

These beats just can't compete with the smaller more efficent types. Fortunatly they are not expecting job losses from this as they are bringing new types into production. Just might not be as many new jobs.


'I am a Norfolk man, and i glory in being so'

On the bench: Airfix 1/600 HMS Belfast

                      AMT Trade Federation Tank

  • Member since
    March, 2010
  • From: Boston
Posted by mach71 on Thursday, February 14, 2019 10:28 AM

Its always unpleasent to see an aircraft fail commercially, but this was a long time coming. The plane was doomed from day one. 

The 787/A350 are the longhaul airframes of the future for now. 

Airbus learned a hard lesson with the A380.

It's interesting that the 747 will probably outlive it.


  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Friday, February 15, 2019 9:09 AM

Looks like Boeing called it right on the sizes of their latest offerings.


Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    March, 2005
  • From: Lancaster, South Carolina
Posted by Devil Dawg on Friday, February 15, 2019 8:08 PM

Got to see the prototype A380 fly at the Farnborough Airshow back in July 2006. That thing is HUGE!! When it flew during the show, because it was empty, it was pretty darned maneuverable. It performed an impressive display, showing it's climb rate, turn rate and radius, and how quiet it was. Very impressive.

Devil Dawg

On The Bench: Tamiya 1/32nd Mitsubishi A6M5 Model 52 Zeke For Japanese Group Build

Build one at a time? Hah! That'll be the day!!

  • Member since
    July, 2008
  • From: Vancouver, the "wet coast"
Posted by castelnuovo on Saturday, February 16, 2019 4:46 PM

Impressive giant, for sure. Good for flying hub to hub but many people today preffer to fly from one medium size airport which is closer to them to wherever. A380 is limited by the size of the airport. 

  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Saturday, February 16, 2019 5:21 PM

    I wonder if the overseas travel market did not expand as much as the bean counters thought it might. Larger aircraft to carry more passengers would prove profitable, however if the number hasn't reached that threshold then the exsisting available airframes, 747, 787, 777, and Airbus offerings will probably suffice.

    Aviation industry is cyclic, it goes up and down, right now regional and medium range airframes are more desirable. I hope my aircraft get purchased so I can keep my job.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, February 16, 2019 5:23 PM

And I just finished design of the new Terminal B at SFO, which has two-story gate houses with loading bridges for the 380.

  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Saturday, February 16, 2019 5:34 PM

   I saw one at a gate at DFW, what a MASSIVE plane. I think the current operators will continue to fly the 380, however there will be limitations, as now, to terminals large enough to service something that big. More than likely it will continue to be an international hauler for as long as the airframe has service life.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    March, 2010
  • From: Boston
Posted by mach71 on Saturday, February 16, 2019 8:51 PM

Economics killed the A380. Plain and simple.


In the airline industry there is a thing called the America West lesson. In the '90s America West bought 3 747s. On paper the 747 was the most economical airliner at the time, If you filled it up. If you don't it burns though cash faster than any other airliner. The fixed costs are so high. The 3 747's did not last long.


The A380 has 4 engines and quad redundancy on all the systems. It equates to 2 times the maintenace than a 777 or A330 and twice the fuel burn. Yes it carries a lot of people, but the cost to buy and opperate are huge. The flexibility that 2 A330's gives an airline is also very important. 


The 787 and the 737-800/900 changed the way airlines operate. They had the range and the lower operating cost to open up city pairs that previously could only be connected through hubs. 

Airbus answered with the 320NEO and the A350. 

These aircraft greatly diminished the cost advantage to large hubs.

There is a reason all new airliners have 2 engines. Cost. 

The A340 failed and the A380 is in its death throws, as is the 747. 





  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Saturday, February 16, 2019 10:22 PM

   I would agree Mach71, kinda what I said only better explained.

    I don't think we have seen the last of the 747, probably production wise, yet they are being purchased by cargo carriers out of Arizona. Frieght by weight is more cost effective to move than passengers.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Somewhere over the rainbow
Posted by m1garand on Saturday, February 23, 2019 10:24 PM

Glad I got to fly in A380 few years back (Korean Air A380) and must say it was one of the most comfortable plane ride I've ever had. 


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