I'm going to quote above your post due to using the iPhone.
First I agree!
Second the 717 is great for a lot of things and it's too bad Boeing suffocated it. That said the SWA insiders who don't want the 717 and said recently that SWA management in roadshows was saying the 717 would be released are now saying that it's staying. Whether that's because SWA wants the 717 or any deal to get rid it of it isn't worth it or Delta doesn't like the numbers for now we won't know. But SWA management mentioned the 717 sim will be headed to Dallas.
After a hellacious weekend of nonreving I think I see the beauty of the 88 for sure now. We need seats. 319s, 73-7s and 9s just don't cut it. They have their place but what is needed is cheap airplanes with lots of seats IMHO to absorb irops.
I'm not convinced fuel efficiency is that big of a deal if 150 seater can be had cheap, in the case of allegiant for $4-$5M for line ready birds, versus a horribly expensive smaller first year model high efficiency jet. Want fuel efficiency then let's talk props.
I say buy used Airbuses and 80s until your house is in order.
Maybe I'm jaded about new planes but I can tell you after looking through the sales numbers of a large multi store car dealership I can say the money wasn't in new cars but the $10,000 range used cars. The ones you can buy for $3k and sell for $9.9k versus the high price used or new cars where the margins were under $2.5k and you lived off maintenance and finance & interest income and manufacturer coupons. Dealers love the margins of their used lots.
Originally Posted by NuGuy
Replacement 100 seaters do NOT have to be expensive.
Take a DC-9...maybe with a new wing with better high altitude performance / more fuel. The airfame structure itself is PROVEN by 50 years experience.
Normal cabin and cargo capacity.
Simplify the systems a bit. The 717 would be a good model for this.
Where you can, have STONE SIMPLE systems with good dispatch redundancy. Anyone who's ever turned a wrench on a DC-9 or 737 should be able to fix it.
What you don't need is a MD-11 cockpit. Two IRUs, two comms, a simple FMS with BASIC RNAV capability (no need for RNP in the states). Think of something along the lines of a F-100.
No fly by wire. No hydraulic powered flight controls. No complicated engines. Roll it down hill, let the clutch out, and off you go. You should be able to practically pull start the engines.