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Source: Reuters

Boeing reviews viability of short-haul 787 model

Published: 08 Jan 2010 15:11:06 PST

* Short-range 787 model under review

* All Nippon switched orders

ATLANTA, Jan 8 - Boeing Co is reviewing plans for a shorter-haul version of its carbon-composite Dreamliner aircraft after a top customer switched orders to another model.

"The market viability of the 787-3 is currently being assessed," Jim Proulx, a spokesman for Boeing commercial airplanes, told Reuters on Friday.

All Nippon Airways, the launch customer for the 787, switched its orders for the 787-3 plane, meant to fly shorter routes, for longer-range versions. As a result, Boeing no longer has any 787-3 planes in its order backlog, Proulx said.

Addressing the switch on his blog, Boeing commercial planes Marketing Vice President Randy Tinseth said that for All Nippon "getting aircraft into their hands for earlier delivery was a better solution for them."

Boeing is offering different versions of the Dreamliner, which promises greater fuel efficiency by using durable, lightweight composite materials.

The 787-3 model is meant to accommodate up to 330 passengers on routes of up to 5,650 kilometers, while the 787-8 and 787-9 versions are designed to carry fewer passengers for longer distances.

The 787 made its first test flight in mid-December.

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