Boeing CEO open to shelving 737-10 amid political standoff
by Sean Broderick, Joe Anselmi, Jens Flottau, Guy Norris 7th July 2022 Aviation Week
Just imagine for a moment if Boeing did not build a 737-10 after all? What would that do to its share of the single-aisle market? How would that affect pricing for the Airbus A321neo, which would be left with a monopoly at the upper end of the narrowbody market, and airline fleet plans? Would it force Boeing to accelerate a new aircraft program? How would investors react?
Those seemingly theoretical questions have gained new weight now that CEO David Calhoun has made it clear that the company has not ruled out the drastic step of shelving the largest variant of the MAX family. At issue: a looming standoff with Congress on whether to extend a year-end deadline that would require changes to the aircraft’s flight deck system. If Boeing cannot certify the 737-10 by then, and a waiver is not granted, the company would have to redesign the aircraft’s flight deck to add an alerting system, eliminating its commonality with the other 737 MAX variants—a key selling point of the family.
“The [737-10] is a little bit of an all-or-nothing,” Calhoun told Aviation Week editors in an interview at the company’s new headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. “I think our case is persuasive enough. . . . This is a risk I’m willing to take. If I lose the fight, I lose the fight.”