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Boeing Considers a Larger 717 Model

September 20, 2003|From Associated Press

Boeing Co. has developed plans for a 130-passenger stretch version of the 717 to compete with models from Europe's Airbus, Embraer of Brazil and Bombardier of Canada.

Boeing said the proposed 717-300X, to be assembled in Long Beach, would be 14 feet longer than the 717-200 and carry about 20 more passengers.

Chicago-based Boeing has offered the design to the 17 airlines in the worldwide Star Alliance, spokesman Warren Lamb said.

Air Canada, Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and Scandinavian Airline System, all members of the alliance, are pursuing a joint purchase of as many as 200 jets in the 75-to-125-passenger range.

Potential manufacturers include Boeing, Airbus, Embraer and Bombardier.

If Boeing gets enough orders, deliveries of the 717-300X would begin in late 2006.

The 717 is a shorter-range twin-engine jet designed for quick turnarounds on high- frequency routes.

Shares of Boeing fell 35 cents to $35.79 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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