Today marks the second full year of service for the freighter variant of the Boeing 777. The manufacturer has so far delivered 39 units and has 44 still in its firm backlog. Yes, that’s right, 44. Boeing’s website shows a total of just 79 firm orders, but Cargo Facts has learned that a mid-February order from an unidentified customer for four 777s is in fact for freighters, and the real total is 83.
Who is the mystery customer? One obvious candidate is Lufthansa Cargo, which earlier this year confirmed that it planned to order “the equivalent of six more MD-11Fs.” But that is just a guess, and we have not been able to confirm it. We also note that FedEx has ordered a further 15 units conditional on the US Congress making no change in its (FedEx’s) labor relations governance. Since such a change is almost certainly not going to be made, this brings the total orders to 98.
According to Boeing, The 777 freighter fleet has so far flown approximately 120,000 hours, with a daily utilization rate of 11.34 hours, and a fleet schedule reliability of 99.37 percent. Boeing also believes that the 39 units delivered in the first two years is more than have been delivered for any other production freighter in the two years following first delivery.
The 39 units in service are operated by the following carriers:
FedEx — 12
AeroLogic — 8
China Southern — 5
China Eastern — 4 (For China Cargo Airlines)
Air France — 2
Emirates — 2
LAN — 2
Qatar — 2
Southern — 2