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United Airlines Removes Boeing 737 MAX 10 From Expected Aircraft Deliveries

by Staff

Summary

  • United Airlines has removed the MAX 10 from its fleet plan until after 2025 due to Boeing quality control issues and certification delays.
  • United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby expressed concerns over ongoing Boeing problems, causing the airline to plan for future deliveries without the MAX 10.



According to an SEC filing, United Airlines has removed the Boeing 737 MAX 10 from its fleet plan from this year until after 2025. This comes after a string of problems with Boeing quality control and delays in the certification of the aircraft type.


Planning for the unknown

Last month, an exit door plug blew out on an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9, leading to a decision from the Federal Aviation Administration to ground the MAX 9s with the same configuration as the affected aircraft. Upon inspection, several aircraft were found to have loose bolts on the door plugs, and Boeing accepted the fault for the problems. Quality lapses have been a problem at Boeing for several years now, and this seems to be the final straw that broke the camel’s back.


Several airline CEOs commented on the incident, many saying Boeing needs to get their act together, and United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby had his own words for the American manufacturer. Kirby added that because of ongoing problems at Boeing, the airline would be forced to consider future plans without the MAX 10, which has not yet been certified. Kirby did not explicitly state that United would cancel its entire MAX 10 order, which stands at 277 planes, but rather, it would need to plan for the unknown.

Photo: Lukas Souza | Simple Flying

Earlier today, the airline posted its 10-K filing, a comprehensive report filed annually by a publicly traded company about its financial performance. The filing reveals that United has started planning its fleet expansion without the MAX 10s. A section of the report outlines the carrier’s outstanding deliveries and how many aircraft it expects to receive in coming years. As seen in the photo below, per its contract with Boeing, United was set to receive 80 MAX 10s in 2024 alone but now expects zero.


Screenshot 2024-02-29 at 17.49.03

Data from United Airlines 10K filing

Between 2024 and 2025, United was supposed to receive more than half of its MAX 10 order. Although the 10-K filing states that United does not expect any MAX 10s in the coming years, the airline specified,

“Due to the delay in the certification of the 737 MAX 10 aircraft, we are unable to accurately forecast the expected delivery period.”

Future deliveries

Though United is not expecting the MAX 10s anytime soon, the airline is still awaiting more MAX 8s, 9s, and 787 Dreamliners. According to the table above, United contractually expected 85 Boeing planes this year but now expects 63. The breakdown is seven 787s (variants not specified), 37 MAX 8s, and 19 MAX 9s.


In addition to Boeing aircraft, United has more than 200 firm commitments with Airbus, although 45 are for A350s, and there are doubts if the airline will ever receive the widebodies. After increasing its A321neo order near the end of 2023, United now has 126 firm commitments and expects 25 this year, a few of which have already been delivered. The airline was expected to receive 26. Though the A321XLR will see its commercial entry into service (EIS) this year, United does not plan to receive its first until the end of 2025.

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  • N14106 United Airlines (Her Art Here-California Livery) Boeing 757-224 (1)

    United Airlines

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    UA/UAL

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Denver International Airport, Guam International Airport, Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport

    Year Founded:
    1931

    Alliance:
    Star Alliance

    CEO:
    Scott Kirby

    Country:
    United States

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