LH rationale for operating A380 & B748's

Discussion in 'Miles & More | Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian/Partners' started by Gaucho, Oct 22, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Gaucho
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    Gaucho Gold Member

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    I posted elsewhere asking about LH's future with its 747-400s that are getting old and was told that LH is a launch customer of the upcoming 747-800. We all know that LH is also an important operator of the A380, and it would seem that the long term fleet planning of LH includes both aircraft.

    Does anybody have insights as to what the rationale is for operating both birds...? Also, how many 748's has Lufthansa put on order...?

    SQ seems to be going the other route... apparently divorcing from this aircraft... and they have no plans to order any 747-800s once their remaining 744s are put into retirement during the first part of 2012.
     
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  2. LETTERBOY
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    According to Wikipedia (always trustworthy, right ;)), Lufthansa has 8 A380s in service, with 7 on order, and 20 orders for 748s.

    As for why they would want both plane types, maybe they're more concerned with trying to replace their long haul fleet quickly than they are with fleet commonality, and want to get deliveries faster by splitting their orders. They could also be trying to play Boeing and Airbus off each other to keep costs down. There could be routes that would work with one plane but not the other. Maybe it's a combination of all three.

    KE operates the A380 and also has orders for 748s.
     
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  3. Scottrick
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    Also according to Wikipedia, the 748 can handle 467 vs. 525 passengers for an A380. Whether the airlines actually include that many seats is a different issue, but 62 passengers is a lot. Not all routes require the 13% boost in capacity that you would get with an A380. Larger hubs might get an A380 while smaller hubs get a 748.
     
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  4. Gaucho
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    Are those pax figures for typical 3 class configurations...?
     
  5. Scottrick
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    I didn't look up how LH configures its planes. Those are just Boeings specs (?) as listed in Wikipedia. But I think the point is the same, an A380 holds more people and isn't always justified.
     
  6. Hartmann
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    LH knows that not all of their routes have the demand the A380 is built for but their 744s can handle and hold cargo on. The 744s are getting old and the 748 is a great replacement.

    Really the long haul options now are 777s, A330s, A340s, A380s, or the 747.
     
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  7. DLroads
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    Also, keep in mind that still not all airports can handle a A380 (even ATL can't do it yet). The A380 vision is based on world flying handled through 30-40 hubs, with the rest connected through smaller planes. The B748 belongs to the same series/vision of the 747: large planes that can multi-function and serve several airports with high reliability and good load factor. The extension allows it to fit more cargo/pax as needed.
    One cannot take from the 74X (at least at this time) being the most frequent used plane at the large category. Probably the best machine built still (even compared to the A380). There are several airports and functions that a 74X can fill and A380 would just not be able to.

    Note: For the record, I do think that the A380 is a great machine, and provides great travel experience. It is just that it would never fly smaller less popular routes. 74X will
     
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  8. Seacarl
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    LH operates 3-classes on their widebodies, albeit just 8 F seats on both the A380 and 744 and probably 748.

    I think the total seatcount difference is closer to 100 seats, though maybe the 62 you cited is correct. Presumably the 748 is cheaper to purchase and somewhat cheaper to operate. I have also heard that the 748 actually has more cargo capacity than the A380 (presumably the single deck is higher in the fuselage with a bigger area below than the 2 decks on the A380.)

    Generally Lufthansa does a pretty thorough job on fleet analysis, so they must feel that the A380 and B748 are sufficiently distinct to both have economically viable roles in LH's operations. Also, LH Technik is a major servicer of aircraft for other airlines, and LH may want to have direct experience with both aircraft to benefit the LH Technik business.
     
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  9. Gaucho
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    Where does the A350 fit in.... is it a 777 clone or is it larger....? Also, is the A350 a 2 or 4 engine plane...?
     
  10. Gaucho
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    Interesting point of the LH Technik.... do they also service B777's...?
     
  11. Seacarl
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    I know LH doesn't operate B777's. Do Swiss, Austrian or Brussels operate them? I would imagine that LH Technik would service them, but that's beyond my pay grade to know.
     
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  12. Gaucho
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    Lauda Air operated one for sure... been a pax on them a couple of times, not sure if Austrian even had one of them also. No idea on Swiss(air)....
     
  13. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    Not on all, though.... Some of the A340 have no F.

    I think the reason for why they want the B748 and the A380 is similar to why they operate A340 and 747 aircraft today: there is a sufficiently large difference in capacity that it gives them more flexibility to match the right aircraft to a route. And reading the LH magazine a couple months ago, they also emphasized that they were heavily involved in the requirements definition for the B748.
     
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  14. Gaucho
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    makes sense..... so then, this makes me wonder even more how LH is not an operator of the 777.......
     
  15. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    I think the A330 and A340 cover that size category for them
     
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  16. Gaucho
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    how large will the A350 be....?
     
  17. jrp2

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  18. LETTERBOY
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    According to the websites of the three airlines, Austrian is the only one that operates 777s. They have 4 772s.
     
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  19. LETTERBOY
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    The A350 will have 2 engines.
     
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  20. Gaucho
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    Lauda is not completetly merged into Austrian I assume...?
     
  21. cennas
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    I believe it is...
     
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