Singapore Airlines has been revealed as the launch customer for Boeing’s 787-10, the super-stretched version of the Dreamliner due in by 2020.
The Singapore flag-carrier will buy 30 of the high-capacity jets, which during its developmental stage carries the 787-10X moniker.
While the 787-10X remains on the drawing board, Boeing’s approach has always been a matter of “when” rather than “if”.
The jets will seat up to 310 passengers, compared to a minimum of 210 seats on the original 787-8 and 250-290 for the longer 787-9, but its added length is more about maximizing carrying capacity for passengers and cargo rather than extending its flight range.
Its size also makes the 787-10X likely to contain first, business and economy cabins, compared to the trend for the smaller 787s to nix first class.
Also read: The 777X – Boeing's next big bird
Singapore Airlines also revealed an order for an additional 30 of the Airbus A350-900, which is considered a direct competitor to the 787.
SQ already has 40 of these aircraft on order and will also take up an option for 20 more, although those may be converted into firm orders for the even larger A350-1000.
The combined deal is estimated to be worth a staggering US$17 billion based on list prices, which pegs the A350-900 at $277.7m each.
While Boeing hasn’t revealed its own pricing on the 787-10X, simple maths indicates a $289m sticker (compared to $206.8m for the 787-8 and $243.6m for the 787-9.
SQ previously held an order for 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliners but passed this down to its low-cost offshoot Scoot, which will run a mixed fleet of 787-8s and 787-9s with first deliveries due in 2014.
For the latest information for business travellers and frequent flyers, follow @AusBT on Twitter.
About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.