Southwest Doesn’t Expect 737-7 In 2024

Daniel Fowkes
26 Jan 2024
· Aircraft 
· Airlines 
Southwest doesn't expect the 737-7 will fly with the airline in 2024, thus dealing another blow to the airline battling delivery delays.

Southwest is once more adjusting its delivery forecast from Boeing, which will no longer include the 737-7, the smallest member of the MAX Series this year.

Certification delays currently plague the Boeing 737-7. However, Southwest had initially forecasted in late 2023 that expectation it would welcome the type in 2024. This would follow a forecasted April 2024 certification timeline, now something Boeing will likely miss.

Away from 737-7s, Southwest has also said that it expects to take fewer deliveries of 737 MAX aircraft overall as Boeing battles with investigations, concerns around quality control and much more.

Ultimately, for a company that is all-Boeing and an airline that relies only on the 737 series, failure to deliver the required amount of MAX jets to aid growth and fleet renewal will impact them

Not The Only Customer Impacted

Southwest is not the only customer impacted by Boeing’s ongoing situation; all airlines relying on the MAX are feeling the heat simultaneously. However, the operational impact will vary depending on the commitment.

United Airlines has said that they’re forecasting growth won’t be as fast as initially predicted because of continued troubles with MAX jets, which highlights that rather than the airline struggling, it’s the planemaker stopping the company from growing as fast as possible.

United Airlines is reportedly reconsidering its order for the Boeing 737-10 as its frustrations with Boeing over delays and quality grow.

Ryanair has been incredibly vocal about their frustrations over the uncertified 737-10 and the lack of clarity. Now, through the latest incident and fallout, the concerns that the timeline will stretch even further become more present. Internally, at United, they’re not expecting the 737-10 anytime soon and are creating alternative plans that do not include this variant.

Following a freeze and increasing production rates by the FAA, other customers worldwide could now be put under more pressure as their already delayed planes are delayed further.

The Continued Boeing Fallout

These delays in certification to the 737-7 that are thus seeing Southwest adjust their focus stem from the continued fallout of the 737-9 incident.

While this variant’s grounding period has come to a close, it’s hardly the end of problems for Boeing, with investigations taking place, production stand-downs, and airlines investigating production practices, among more inspections.

In the space of one month, Boeing’s 2024, initially earmarked as another essential year of rebuilding, increasing production and meeting deadlines, has rapidly come undone with a complete reshift in focus, impacting themselves, their customers and all other relevant parties.

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