Overall, Airbus delivered 661 commercial aircraft throughout 2022, registering 1,078 gross new orders. At the end of the year, the Toulouse, France-based manufacturer’s backlog stood at 7,239 aircraft, as demand for commercial aircraft continued to pick up yearly following 2020. Compared to a year prior, Airbus delivered 50 more aircraft and booked 313 more orders, increasing its backlog by 177 airplanes.
Its most popular products remained the A320 family. The Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) handed over 252 A319 and A320s, as well as 264 A321s. Additionally, 53 A220s found their way to customers across the globe. Airbus built 40 more A321s compared to 2021 and the type overtook the two smaller aircraft in the A320 family, the A319 and A320, as the most popular single-aisle jet in the planemaker’s product portfolio. The manufacturer delivered 10 fewer A319s and A320s in 2022.
In November 2022, it began assembling the first A321 at the Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Tianjin, China. The European company also plans to add another FAL in Mobile, Alabama, where it has been assembling the A220 and A320 family of aircraft. The new assembly line should come online by 2025. Airbus plans to build 65 A319, A320, and A321s in 2023, ramping up that number to 75 by mid-decade, with the manufacturer yet to clarify an exact date.
However, the OEM fell short of its goal to deliver 700 aircraft in 2022. In December 2022, citing “a complex operating environment”, Airbus announced that it would fail to reach that mark. The problems were present throughout its supply chain, where suppliers suffered from labor and COVID-19-related issues, resulting in mounting delivery delays.
Nevertheless, the failure to achieve the goal would not have an impact on its previous financial guidance for the year, according to the announcement from December 2022. Per its latest financial results, as of September 30, 2022, Airbus expected to achieve Earnings Before Income and Taxes (EBIT) adjusted of €5.5 billion ($5.9 billion) and a Free Cash Flow (before Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) and Customer Financing) of €4.5 billion ($4.8 billion) in 2022.