United Airlines' first 737 MAX 10

United Airlines asked Boeing to produce the 737 MAX 9 instead of the MAX 10

Carrier CEO Scott Kirby has conditioned a move in favor of the 737-10 if the jet obtains its type certification

United Airlines has taken another step away from the 737 MAX 10, the largest variant of Boeing’s narrow-body jet. CEO of the US carrier, Scott Kirby revealed that he had asked the manufacturer to stop producing the MAX 10 and start assembling the MAX 9.

The new statement reinforces what Kirby had previously said, that United is considering canceling orders for the aircraft and ordering more A321neo, its Airbus competitor.

“We’ve asked Boeing to stop building MAX 10s for us and build MAX 9s,” the airline’s CEO said at a conference on March 12. “If and when the Max 10 gets certified, we’ll convert them back to MAX 10s.”

The change of plans came shortly after an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 lost a door plug in flight in January. In the following weeks, the failure was attributed to a problem on the jet’s assembly line in Renton.

An FAA audit of Boeing facilities showed flaws in 33 of 89 of the company’s production processes.

United A321neo (Airbus)

277 orders for 737 MAX 10

The new episode of damage to the planemaker’s image has led to growing predictions that the type certification of the 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 10 jets, already delayed, will be postponed.

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The MAX 10, with capacity for 230 passengers, was launched in 2016 and already has more than 1,000 gross orders. The aircraft was supposed to enter service at the end of 2025, however, some customers no longer see this happening before 2026.

Even so, Delta and American Airlines continue to invest in the aircraft, however, with contractual clauses in case of new unforeseen events.

United Airlines has a firm order for 277 737-10s plus 200 purchase options. Kirby also stated that he is talking to Airbus about a new order for the A321neo, as long as a feasible agreement is possible.



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