Airbus halts production of long-haul A340 plane

European planemaker Airbus said Thursday it was abandoning production of its A340 long-haul four-engine aircraft, which failed to compete with Boeing's 777. "We have accepted reality. We have not sold any A340s for nearly two years," Airbus finance director Hans Peter Ring said during a presentation on the third-quarter results of Airbus parent company EADS. The abandoning of the programme will allow Airbus to write back into its books a provision of 192 million euros ($261 million) it had made on the programme. The A340 first flew in April 1992 and in 1993 it scored a record for the longest non-stop flight, between Paris and Auckland, New Zealand. The Boeing 777 launched two years later and had the same capacity but with only two engines it was more fuel-efficient. Airbus parent company EADS announced on Thursday a six-month delay in first deliveries of its A350 long-haul jetliner, designed to compete with Boeing's 787 Dreamliner, but raised its outlook for the year after third-quarter profits surged. (c) 2011 AFP

Source: AFP
Date: Nov 10, 2011