By Mauro Orru


Airbus delivered 735 commercial aircraft to customers last year, above the 720 target the company had set itself, thanks to strong orders for both narrow- and wide-body planes from airlines scrambling to meet air-travel demand.

The European plane maker said Thursday that it delivered 68 of its A220 planes and 571 A320s, both narrow-body aircraft types, in 2023. For its wide-body models, Airbus delivered 32 A330s, and 64 A350s.

Airbus had shipped 623 planes through November, meaning it delivered the remaining 112 in December alone. The company had originally hoped to achieve 720 deliveries in 2022 but was forced to shelve that goal due to supply-chain woes.

In the end, it handed 661 planes to customers that year, short of a downgraded target of around 700. The aviation industry has been grappling for months with supply-chain challenges that have made it harder to procure some spare parts and raw materials.

"A number of factors came together to help us achieve our goals, including the increased flexibility and capability of our global industrial system, as well as the strong demand from airlines to refresh their fleets with our most modern and fuel-efficient aircraft," Airbus Chief Executive Guillaume Faury said.

The group said in November that it expected to produce 75 of its A320 narrow-body aircraft a month in 2026. For its A330 wide-body, Airbus is aiming for four a month in 2024, while production of its bigger A350 model is expected to reach 10 aircraft a month in 2026, up from a previous target of nine at the end of 2025.

Airbus had slashed production of its wide-body planes early on in the coronavirus pandemic, when travel restrictions and border closures brought international traffic to a near standstill. Now, airlines are scrambling for planes to expand capacity to meet surging demand for international air travel.

Emirates Airline placed an order for 15 Airbus A350-900 jets valued at $6 billion at the Dubai Airshow, as part of plans to deploy the aircraft for flights of up to 15 hours from Dubai.

"We originally anticipated aviation to recover sometime in the 2023-25 timeframe, but what we saw in 2023 was, alongside the single-aisle market, wide-body return much sooner than expected, and with vigor," Christian Scherer, chief executive of Airbus's core commercial aircraft business, said.

Airbus registered 2,319 gross new orders last year, with 2,094 net orders. Its backlog stood at 8,598 aircraft at the end of December.


Write to Mauro Orru at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 11, 2024 12:36 ET (17:36 GMT)

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