The European aerospace giant, Airbus, announced on Thursday that it would terminate the production of its superjumbo A380, the two – stage jet that has garnered admiration from passengers but has not been seen. has failed to convince enough airlines to justify its huge costs.
The company announced that it would stop shipping in 2021 the A380, which has been in service for more than a decade, after the Emirates carrier, based in Dubai, reduced the total order for this model of 39 aircraft.
This marks the ignoble end of a bold gamble on how millions of people would travel in the future, as airlines struggled to fill a plane capable of carrying between 500 and 850 people.
"After a review of its operations and technological developments in aircraft and engines, Emirates is reducing its A380 order book from 162 to 123 aircraft," Airbus said in a statement.
"As a result and given the lack of backlog with other airlines, Airbus will stop delivering the A380 by 2021."
Airbus had been forced to slow down the production of A380 in recent years before preventing in January 2018, the program could be abandoned if no new order had been entered.
Just days after the announcement, the airline appeared to have a lifeline with the latest deal with Emirates, but last month Airbus admitted that the airline could now be reconsidering its decision.
In its statement on Thursday, Airbus announced that it would deliver the last 14 A380s to Emirates over the next two years, adding that the airline had ordered 70 smaller aircraft from the builder.
The decision of Emirates means that "Airbus" does not have an important backlog for the A380 and therefore has no basis to support its production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years, "said Airbus CEO Tom Enders.
Airbus also released its results for 2018 on Thursday, recording a 29% rise in net profit to 3 billion euros ($ 3.4 billion).
The company announced that it would deliver between 880 and 890 new commercial aircraft this year, adding that it was allocating 436 million euros to the A400M military transport program.
The disappearance of the aircraft echoed that of the supersonic Concorde built by the British and French precursors of Airbus, a technological feat of the 1970s that never succeeded in proving its commercial viability.
Airbus was facing skepticism about the future of the A380 since the 1990s, when it had begun to consider a competitor of the highly popular Boeing 747, its American rival.
The conglomerate, long regarded as a shining example of pan-European industrial cooperation, suffered a series of costly delays before Singapore Airlines' first commercial flight by Singapore Airlines in 2007.
Production problems and cost overruns in billions of euros continued to weigh on the project, forcing Airbus to report its first annual loss for 2006.
Even after being hit by the 2007 global financial crisis, Airbus stood up to the A380 when the airlines began to question the possibility of owning huge, unprofitable aircraft. only when they were full to bursting.
On the contrary, Boeing has significantly refuted Airbus' theory that airlines want huge carriers to serve a handful of global platforms and instead focus on its medium-sized 787 Dreamliner.
This bet has paid off: more than 1,100 Dreamliners have been ordered since it entered service in 2011, compared to just over 320 A380s.
Key executives and shareholders were believed to have sold shares of Airbus' parent company shortly before the superjumbo production issues were made public, although no one was in trouble. 39, was sentenced.
The A380 program's stimulus promises have not prevented further delays, although a series of security issues have raised questions among potential customers, including long-targeted Chinese airlines.