• France's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Airbus exec says Boeing Dreamliner 'not reliable'

AFP · 20 Jul 2013, 10:03

Published: 20 Jul 2013 10:03 GMT+02:00

"It's pretty obvious that this airplane is not reliable and does not have mature systems," Airbus sales chief John Leahy told reporters at a ceremony to mark the 1,000th delivery of the company's A330 plane, to Hong Kong airline Cathay Pacific.

"You can keep it flying but it's going to cost you a lot of maintenance," Leahy said, in the first comments by Airbus management about the Dreamliner's difficulties.

"What they've got is an architecture that is not mature and that will eventually become mature. It's going to take a lot of time, a lot of money, a lot of cancelled flights. And maybe redesign quite a few systems onboard."

Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has suffered from a string of problems this year, including a fire on board an empty Ethiopian Airlines plane at London's Heathrow airport last week.

British authorities on Thursday said a distress beacon was the likely cause of the fire and recommended they be disabled onboard all Dreamliners.

The Dreamliner, which makes extensive use of lighter, carbon-based composite materials that reduce fuel consumption, came into service in September 2011.

But Boeing issued a global grounding order in January after lithium-ion batteries overheated on two different jets.

The US aviation giant has not been able to identify the root cause of the earlier problems, much to its embarrassment, but it said its modifications would prevent the problems recurring.

Story continues below…

However, the planes have been dogged by problems since they began flying once again in April, with a series of flights worldwide cancelled or diverted due to mechanical issues.

The latest incident came on Thursday, when a Japan Airlines 787 that left Boston for Tokyo turned back due to a possible pump problem.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Focus
French fighter jet deal: India 'a school of patience'
Rafale jets at an assembly hanger in Merignac, southwestern France. Photo: Jean-Pierre Muller/AFP

The less-than-supersonic sale of French Rafale fighter jets to India has highlighted the obstacles facing foreign arms firms seeking to do business with the world's biggest weapons importer.

Hollande vows to 'completely dismantle' Calais Jungle
French President Francois Hollande visiting a refugee centre in Tours. Photo: Guillaume Souvant/AFP

President Francois Hollande has bowed to right-wing pressure and stepped up pledge to combat illegal migration.

First driverless minibus goes on trial in Paris
Gilbert Gagnaire, Director General of Easy Mile, poses in front of his driverless EZ10 minibus. Photo: Eric Feferberg/AFP

The French capital's transport authority will carry out its first test of a driverless minibus on Saturday.

Feature
Room for improvement: Paris's matchbox apartments
Receptionist Ivan Lopez in his tiny "chambre de bonne". Photo: Thomas Samson/AFP

Thousands of Parisians round off a hard day's work with a trudge up six flights of stairs to a tiny, stuffy room they resignedly call home.

Former president Chirac still in hospital but wife home
Bernadette Chirac executes a deal at the French Stock Exchange on September 12. Photo: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP

Former French president Jacques Chirac remains in hospital in Paris but his wife Bernadette has now been discharged.

Pope holds multi-faith meeting with Nice victims
Pope Francis kisses a baby on arrival at his weekly audience in St Peter's Square. Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/ AFP

Pope Francis will on Saturday hold a multi-faith meeting of grieving relatives and survivors of an attack in France in July when a jihadist ploughed his truck into a crowd in Nice.

Cameron school pal appointed UK ambassador to France
Ed Llewellyn has spent time in the European Commission. Photo: Gov.uk

Ed Llewellyn attended the Eton College at the same time as former PM David Cameron, and then served as his chief of staff throughout his eleven years as Conservative leader.

UK announces new ambassador to France
Photo: gov.uk

Meet Edward Llewellyn, the UK's new ambassador to France.

How far have you assimilated into French culture?
Photo: Marie/Flickr

Which stage of the assimilation process are you at?

Opinion - Integration
'Stop telling immigrants to be French and help it happen'
Photo: AFP

Demands and laws to force immigrants to live, look, and think like the French are futile and damaging.

Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
National
France's Marion Cotillard rebuffs rumours of fling with Brad Pitt
National
Eight arrested over links to Nice truck attacker
Features
Why everyone should party in a French chateau at least once
Travel
The Frenchman who hated 'Nazi-Zealand' after four-day hitch-hike fail
Culture
What's on: Ten exciting events across France in September
The 45-million year old underground shells that flavour Champagne
Features
French job speak: All the terms you need to know
'Resilient' Paris now a more appealing city than New York
National
France says it's OK to warn drivers about speed cameras
Meet Honorine, 113, the oldest person in France
Education
Grenoble named France's best city to be a student
Society
New Metro map reveals cheapest pints of beer in Paris
Business & Money
How reliant is the French economy on Paris?
Society
Here's why Parisians want to move to Bordeaux
And the 'best place to spend a weekend in Europe' is… Lyon
Analysis & Opinion
'Muslims in France must be considered ordinary citizens'
Armed guards to ride French trains from October
National
France among Europe's priciest for train travel
National
Paris set to make river bank car-free for six-month trial
Society
Bordeaux hospital ranked as best in France
National
France rolls out 'world's first' driverless buses
Society
15 things a Frenchwoman can do to feel more British
Culture
Every fact you need to know about France's 'départements'
2,730
jobs available