Airbus Calls Time on A380 Program

COVID-19 is expected to accelerate the end of certain widebodies, including the Airbus A380. Despite its manufacturer Airbus announcing the end of production a year before the outbreak of the virus, the past year has seen several of its Middle Eastern operators propose retirement strategies for the superjumbo. In March 2021, Etihad CEO Tony Douglas said the airline is likely to retire all of its A380s, which are currently in storage, as a result of the crisis. Qatar Airways intends to phase out all 10 of its A380s by 2028, but five of these aircraft will exit its fleet before then. While the world's largest operator Emirates intends to keep A380s operating, it has already started to divest some of these aircraft from its fleet over the past year.
Roughly 10 years ago this column was roundly criticized for describing the Airbus A380 program as a failure.Orders would snowball once airlines realized what a great aircraft it was, some said; the A380 would herald a new era of long-haul, low-cost travel, others argued.In truth, the aircraft has...

Subscription Required


This content requires a subscription to one of the Aviation Week Intelligence Network (AWIN) bundles.

Schedule a demo today to find out how you can access this content and similar content related to your area of the global aviation industry.

Already an AWIN subscriber? Login


Did you know?  Aviation Week has won top honors multiple times in the Jesse H. Neal National Business Journalism Awards, the business-to-business media equivalent of the Pulitzer Prizes.