Air Transport World

Covering the marketplace. (Airbus A330 and A340 aircraft) (includes article about manufacture of A330/340 wing components)

LONDON--Airbus Industrie sees its A330 and A340 as forming two variants of a single type--one a twin, the other with four engines--but the same in virtually every other way. And over the years, strategy has been to view the 330/340 market category as a single entity.

"We discovered early in 1985, when we first talked seriously within the marketplace, that there were two distinct parts to the market category," Airbus VP-Marketing David Jennings told ATW.

"First, there was the requirement for an aircraft for domestic and regional services--a high-density service for Europe, Asia and North America. We rapidly identified this as being twin-engine territory.

"At the same time, many airlines were concentrating their marketing view on how to meet the requirements of the long-range market and whether that market would continue to be the province of 400-plus-seat airplanes.

"We developed a engineering and marketing strategy that covered this whole marketplace, where the long-range requirement is met by the 4-engine airplane and the medium-range requirement is met by the twin.

"There is an overlap. Just where the two join is a moot point. …

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