Published: Fri, May 12, 2017
Markets | By Erika Turner

Boeing halts test flights of new plane over engine issue

Boeing halts test flights of new plane over engine issue

737 Max jetliner flights have been temporarily suspended by Boeing over a possible manufacturing flaw in the engines.

Safran received the disc from a supplier, but there are other suppliers of that part so production of the engine, known as the LEAP 1-B, was continuing, Kennedy said.American Airlines Group Inc, which has 100 737 MAX jets on order, declined to comment and referred questions to Boeing.

Boeing's new 737 MAX 9 aircraft is seen during takeoff on its first flight in Renton, Washington, U.S., April 13, 2017. The Boeing Company saw stock value drop about 1.16 percent, while GE saw a drop of about 0.87 percent.

Aircraft engine maker CFM International said on Thursday that Boeing Co has engines in stock for its grounded 737 MAX that are cleared to fly.

CFM builds the LEAP engines for the latest generation of Boeing 737 aircraft and offers them for Airbus's competing A320neo model in competition with Pratt & Whitney UTX.N . In the meantime, production will continue using discs from a separate CFM supplier, he said. CFM said it will conduct inspections to determine how many jets are impacted. On this, Boeing confirmed that the first of the Max 737 planes will be delivered in 2018.

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The engine turbine part found to have the problem is manufactured by more than one company and delivery delays are not expected to last long.

As of the end of March, Boeing had 3,703 orders for the Boeing 737 MAX series from 48 different customers.

"This doesn't look like a serious concern", Cai von Rumohr, an analyst with financial services firm Cowen & Co, wrote to his clients, according to Canada's National Post. "The LEAP-1A engine is not affected", he added.

Boeing's spokesperson stated that "out of an abundance of caution, we made a decision to temporarily suspend MAX flights". Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Co. expects to begin using the plane for passenger flights this fall.

"This aircraft has a lower per-seat cost than the current wide-body aircraft servicing the transatlantic (routes)", Primera Air President Andri M. Ingolfsson said in a statement.

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