PARIS, June 22 (Reuters) - Boeing said it had won 571 orders and commitments for jetliners at the Paris Airshow, upstaging European rival Airbus after the launch of a new model of its 737 MAX passenger jet.
Sales chief Ihssane Mounir said the U.S. planemaker had netted 147 new orders or commitments for the newly launched Boeing 737 MAX 10, designed to add more capacity to the medium-haul series to catch up with strong sales of the Airbus A321neo.
Responding to Airbus criticism that the new plane’s success at the show had been won largely at the expense of conversions from existing models, Mounir said this was just the start and that conversions had been a useful way to meet demand.
He added it was “too early to call” whether sales of the 787 Dreamliner this week had boosted the chances of increasing production of the jet to 14 a month, but added such demand was “starting to define our thinking”. Any decision will be based on overall global demand, he said.
He also hinted at orders for the 777 wide-body jet which faces a drop in production pending the arrival of a newer model.
“There will be more 777s that we can talk about as time marches on,” he told a news conference. (Reporting by Tim Hepher and Mike Stone; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)