Boeing Posts All-Time High Jet Sales and Deliveries in 2014

SEATTLE (The Seattle Times/TNS) -

Boeing posted year-end data Tuesday showing it busted through all previous production and sales records in 2014.

The Chicago-based airplane giant delivered 723 commercial airliners to customers. That’s 75 more than last year’s record high.

The increase is due largely to the ramp-up in production of the 787 Dreamliner in Everett, Wash., and Charleston, S.C., as well as faster-than-ever production of the 737 single-aisle domestic jet in Renton, Wash.

Boeing delivered 114 Dreamliners in the year, four more than its target.

Of those, 34 were assembled and delivered in Charleston. That marks a considerable step up in capability there; in 2013, Boeing South Carolina delivered only 14 Dreamliners.

The Renton plant rolled out a record 485 single-aisle 737 jets, including 11 of the P-8 anti-submarine military versions of the 737 and two C-40A Clipper models used by the Navy for high-priority cargo and passenger transport.

The jet maker also posted 1,432 net orders, surpassing the previous all-time sales high of 1,413 net orders in 2007.

For four years after that prior high, the global financial crisis sharply reduced sales, but orders have steadily recovered since 2012.

Because of the newly launched 777X, Boeing’s 2014 orders were skewed more than normal toward expensive widebody jets.

Boeing landed 283 orders for its 777s, including 220 for the coming 777Xs.

The 737 remains a huge seller, with 1,104 net orders last year, including 891 orders for the new 737 MAX models.

The 787 Dreamliner won 41 net orders in the year. That included two immediate follow-on orders for the 787-9 from Air New Zealand, which in July was the first airline to take that new, larger Dreamliner model.

Airbus is due to release its 2014 year-end data next week. Until then, it’s uncertain which manufacturer sold more airplanes.

But it’s already clear that Boeing will beat Airbus on jet deliveries.

And because of the higher proportion of widebody jets in Boeing’s sales figures, the total value of the U.S. manufacturer’s orders will also probably be higher than that of its European rival.

In a statement, Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO Ray Conner said he’s “extremely proud of the entire Boeing team, and all of the hard work that went into delivering and selling a record number of commercial airplanes this past year.”