First A380’s begin scraping and part-out

They’re not even 12 years old. Nobody wanted them at the end of their leases.

The first A380’s were over weight, had a number of wiring issues early on and later a serious wing root stress fracture that required months out of service to fix.

Singapore Airlines chose to replace the aircraft with new ones at the end of the lease, but 9V-SKA and SKB (MSN 003 & 005 respectively) are now being broken up. It was the only way for Dr Peters Leasing, the owners to see any further return in their money.

Sadly it’s not just the two of them. They’ve already been joined by 9V-SKD & SKE, and while no decision on their immediate future has been decided, breaking them up seems almost certain.

In their heyday back in 2007 (over a year late) Singapore Airlines flew the maiden commercial flight to Sydney on October 25th. The reviews were outstanding and passengers loved it. Sadly even then, warning signs of a global financial meltdown were already flashing up, and a year later the worst financial collapse and depression in 70 years engulfed the world.

Airbus and many of the big leasing companies with A380’s on their books, are deeply worried about where the future lies for these aircraft. Almost 60% of all those built are leased and yet the secondary market seems non-existent.

HiFly who have one of the old SIA aircraft haven’t had anywhere near the use for it that was expected and its had technical problems.

British Airways was keen to examine the used market – it loves its A380’s, but the cost of refurbishment to BA standards ran into £45m per aircraft and made them untenable.

Nobody else seems to be even vaguely interested. Let’s hope that the salvage companies make some skins available for airliner tags…