LONDON — now projects the type certification for the military airlifter will be delayed until the second quarter of 2012.
A few weeks agoofficials still thought a 2011 certification might be possible, although there were already indications the milestone could be delayed until 2012.
One of the issues has been finding the right weather conditions to complete the anti-icing trials. Another was a delay in some flight trials because of problems with the TP400D turboprop.
In a briefing to investors, Airbus COO Fabrice Bregier notes, however, that preparations are still under way to meet the contractual deadline of handing the first airlifter to a customer (in this case the French military) in March 2013. The aircraft, MSN007, is now in final assembly.
Flight testing of the A400M has now reached 2,554 hr. with 859 flights. Bregier adds that systems are matching customer needs.
Bregier also notes that production of the aircraft is set to reach 2.5 per month in 2015.
But the earnings outlook for the A400M is weak, althoughCFO Hans-Peter Ring indicates that some improvement could come from exports, service opportunities and operational improvements.