I understand any company do things that give net profit. But, had not manufacturing newer engines that increase its Endurance and Range saved it from its decline?

Airbus had designed the A380 to carry as many people as possible so that airlines would be able to fly fewer flights. Instead of flying multiple flights between two cities, airlines could save money by flying just one A380 flight and cramming as many passengers into one plane.

What that would've meant, however, was fewer flights and less flexibility for travellers who don't want to rely on just one flight per day. Very few airlines used the model as intended and the A380 came too late as Boeing was already knee-deep in the 787's development by the time the A380 took its first flight.


Though, bigger aircraft need more ground handling times and management. But with the oncoming innovations, it would have been decreased in future.

For example,

The Wheeltug


enter image description here

As the electric power is used, it also reduces required staffs, cuts down time and Taxi fuel too.
And that may help the airlines too increase the number of flights.  

The FlexSys Morphing Wing


enter image description here

As the weight of hydraulics are removed here. This can also lead to higher fuel economy.

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Concept

Video1 Video2 enter image description here

It is nice that the Airbus is itself working on this concept for commercial airliners. 
And it would had been nice too if it was implemented to A380 later too. 

Reducing the wing span by folding wings on ground for smaller airports. (Though mentioned earlier) Improving engines for shorter Takeoff and Noise Reduction, etc. could help the airliners to reach more destinations with A380.

I want to know the practical feasibilty of introducing an A380neo. And how my above mentioned innoventions fail to be implied in A380? Also, could idling the outer engines thrust help in reducing the wake while landing or gliding, that eventually reduce the safety regulations and requrements for a "Super" aircraft (by this, I meant, will it lead to decrease the seperation required specially for Bigger Aircrafts)?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Nice question, but too broad. Better to ask several questions $\endgroup$
    – Abdullah
    May 10, 2021 at 9:51
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ I strongly suspect this is opinion-based, no matter how many questions it gets split into. $\endgroup$
    – Federico
    May 10, 2021 at 10:11
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ The A380 has achieved its goal: It won the peeing contest between Boeing and Airbus management for the biggest plane. Having suffered 20 years of Boeing subsidising its smaller jets with the monopoly profits from the 747, Airbus was desperate to break that monopoly. Unintentionally in a Phyrric way, however. $\endgroup$ May 10, 2021 at 17:51
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ None of the issues these proposals attempt to fix are the main issue with the 380. It doesn't fly to smaller airports not because its wingspan is too big, but because the demand is not there. No smaller airport will generate enough passengers to fill 500 seats at once. Same for ground turnaround times, the reason you won't see a 380 shuttle flight every two hours is not that it takes too long to give it a pushback, but that no airport pair generates the many thousands of passengers per day to fill it. $\endgroup$
    – TooTea
    May 11, 2021 at 11:48
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I disagree with this being opinion based. And not just because I answered it. My answer shows, that this Q can be answered factually. If Q get reopened, I'll gladly edit sources and citations to my answer to beef it up. $\endgroup$
    – Jpe61
    May 14, 2021 at 20:11

1 Answer 1


Plain and simple, to meet current market requirements, Airbus can do pretty much nothing to make the 380 more "current".

The technical improvements suggested do nothing to change the fact that the 380 is too big, that is, it has too many seats, thus not allowing enough flexibility in this market situation.

In addition to not addressing the main problem, they would need major re-design, except for the wheeltug, which on the other hand is questionable in it's economics: save 20 minutes on ground, haul extra weight for thousands of miles...

There is no sense in technologically further developing a model that has a major "flaw" in it's economics. There are no customers, or not enough at least, for 380neo.

PS: markets are fluid. It may very well be that in furure super jumbos are coming back, but at the moment it does not look like that. If SJ make a comeback, it'll prolly be with a clean sheet design.

PPS: idling outer engines does pretty much nothing for wake turbulence. Wake is "caused" by wings, not engines.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Good answer! Doesn't really look much like a matter of opinion to me. $\endgroup$
    – bogl
    May 10, 2021 at 12:40

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.