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14 July 2016 - Boeing confirm 1.93m fuselage extension for MAX-7

First announced on 21st Apr 2016 and confirmed at the Farnborough airshow on 11 July 2016, that the 737 MAX-7 will be stretched by two seat rows before the first one has even been built.

Sales of the 737 MAX-7 have been very slow with just 60 orders from Southwest and Westjet and that Boeing were considering cancelling the series. Instead, Boeing will redesign it, in a similar vein to the way the 737-900ER was redesigned to boost the failing 737-900. The only difference being that this is being done before product launch.

The underlying problem with short versions of airliners is that they have proportionally more weight per seat than longer versions, ie more fuel burn with less potential for yield. If you look back at all generations of the 737 the shortest models have been the least successful:

  • 737-100. 30 sold out of 1144 originals; 2.6%
  • 737-500. 389 sold out of 1988 classics; 19.6%
  • 737-600. 69 sold out of approx 7100 NGs; 1.0%
  • 737-MAX7. 63 sold out of approx. 3600 MAXs; 1.7%

The 737 MAX-7 seating capacity will be increased from 126 to 150 in two class configs or 172 pax in high density config, with a 76in (1.93m) fuselage stretch. The range will also be increased to 3550nm by using stronger MAX-8 wings and landing gear. The modifications will further increase the BBJ MAX-7 to over 7000nm.

See this article on MAX-7 price wars.

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*** Updated 08 Jun 2017 ***

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Summary of changes

  1. Fuselage lengthened by 76in (1.93m) to accommodate two seat rows (12 seats). Achieved by a 1.17m (46in) fuselage plug forward of the wing and a 0.76m fuselage plug aft of the wing.
  2. Two overwing exits on each side of the fuselage like the MAX-8 and MAX-9 to increase maximum certified passenger capacity.
  3. Higher gauge aluminium wing (like on -8 and -9) to allow for increased fuel capacity
  4. The maximum take-off weight increased from 70,300kg (155,000lb) to 80,300kg
  5. Strengthened landing gear of the 737-8 to take the higher weights

737 MAX-7

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