Express appetite for 777F eclipses 747-400F fleet

A DHL Express-owned 777F operated by Southern Air.

In the first part of our analysis of the global widebody freighter fleet, we found that the overall number of in-service aircraft grew by about 5% year on year to 1,176, with seventy-eight operators as of Jan. 15, 2020, despite 2019 being a generally weak year for air cargo. In the second part of our analysis, we examine how those freighters are operated and how they are distributed — by model, operator type, manufacturer and geographical region.

Distribution by model

Comparing the current fleet to the tally at the end of January 2019 on a model-by-model basis shows substantial increases for all three of Boeing’s current production freighter types, most notably the 777F. The twin-engine 777F fleet grew by twenty-seven units to 179, surpassing the factory-built fleet of 747-400Fs, which stands at 155 units.

Growth of the 777F fleet transcended most carrier types and regions. FedEx took delivery of seven 777Fs during the period, while Qatar Airways added five. Two other factory-built models saw their role in the global widebody freighter fleet increase in the past year: the 767-300F and 747-8F. The 767-300F fleet increased by twenty-one units to 168, with deliveries going to FedEx and UPS, which added five and sixteen units, respectively. The active 747-8F fleet grew by seven units to ninety as UPS added six units and AirBridgeCargo took delivery of one.

For a comprehensive analysis on the distribution of the widebody freighter fleet by model, operator type and geography, and to continue reading this feature, go to Page 8 of our March 2020 issue.

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