FedEx has not ruled out completely its interest in an A380 freighter even though it canceled its $2.3 billion order for 10 last November, Air Transport World reported. The magazine quoted FedEx chairman, president and CEO, Fred Smith as saying that the Memphisbased integrator would “look again” at the super freighter. “It’s a great airplane – a marvelous piece of engineering.” But Smith noted that the delays besetting the programme had rendered a freighter version an option for the more distant future. “Airbus had limited resources and it would have difficulty meeting customer needs and developing a freighter,” he said.
FedEx instead placed an order for 15 777Fs with options for an additional 15. Smith said the two aircraft are completely different, with the 777F able to haul 175,000 lb. of cargo compared to the 300,000-lb. capacity of the A380. Already some Airbus customers have expressed an interest in a stretch version of the A380, which would have structural features similar to a freighter version, he said. If that happens, “We would take another look.”