He told Fin24 that Airbus, with its headquarters in Toulouse, France, made its first delivery of a plane 40 years ago.
“We have seen 40 years of innovation and currently have 7 500 aircraft in service worldwide. At our facility in Toulouse we are building three Airbus A380s per month, among others,” he said.
“Our new Airbus A350 is an example of our innovation and it consists of more than 50% composite structure. That means more than 50% non-metallic material.”
The non-metallic material amounts to a great ability to reduce weight and prevent corrosion. The giant A380, for example, consists of 25% non-metallic material.
Another innovation by Airbus was its introduction in 1970 of the A300, the first wide body twin engine aircraft.
“In 1980 we also pioneered the use of digital technology in the aviation industry,” he told Fin24.
So far 2013 was the company’s best year ever. It received 1 619 new aircraft orders and delivered 626 new aircraft.
“Our aim is at some stage to be able to build 60 aircraft per month in Toulouse,” said Pardoe. “Currently, every two seconds there is an Airbus landing or taking off somewhere in the world.”
At present the company still has 5 508 planes to build for customers and has received 236 new orders from 14 customers so far this year.
Since 2011, Airbus has added 13 African and Indian Ocean airlines to its regional operators’ base and is on track to meet the region’s future needs for over 970 new aircraft over the next 20 years.
Airbus attributes its expansion in the region to its ability to offer a comprehensive aircraft family spanning 120 to 525 seat categories with short-, medium- and long-haul range capabilities.