PARIS -- A raft of orders at the Paris Air Show this week has boosted Airbus's fortunes and handed back the European plane maker the lead in overall airplane sales bookings for 2007 from rival Boeing Co. -- at least so far.
Airbus landed dozens of new orders yesterday from Asia and Latin America for its narrow-bodied A320 and its A330 models, following a string of other deals unveiled at the industry's premier gathering at Le Bourget.
Yesterday's sales brought Airbus to at least 600 firm orders for the year so far, including some 400 this week. Boeing has booked a total of 510 firm orders during 2007, according to an update on the company's website yesterday.
Airbus led Boeing on sales for several years but fell behind in 2006, a bruising year for the European plane maker plagued by management turmoil at parent company EADS and delays on the A380 superjumbo.
At of the end of May, Airbus had booked only 201 firm orders, compared with Boeing's 417.
While Airbus hopes the heavy order flow this week will boost its credibility among customers, the company is still expected to report another big loss this year.
Worker morale is low, as Airbus pushes ahead with thousands of job cuts and factory sell-offs to recoup losses from delays on the A380 superjumbo.
Singapore-based Tiger Airways said yesterday it is ordering 30 single-aisle A320 aircraft from Airbus and is taking options for another 20. The order is valued at $2.2 billion at catalog prices.