Airbus 9-month orders rise to more than 1,000 aircraft, beating target

PARIS (Reuters) - Airbus orders rose to more than 1,000 aircraft in the first nine months of the year, beating its target for 2013, after the planemaker booked a raft of orders which had been pending from European airlines.

However, its order book was dented by the cancellation of three A-380 superjumbos earmarked for Germany's Lufthansa, which this month ordered a batch of smaller long-distance aircraft from both Airbus and Boeing.

Lufthansa's order for the world's largest passenger jet now stands at 14, of which 10 have been delivered.

A spokesman for the airline said the orders had been "firm options," meaning they needed to be reconfirmed to be valid.

Airbus, a unit of EADS, revised its order target up to more than 1,000 aircraft in July, as airlines continue to renew their fleets with more efficient models to reduce fuel costs. Industry sources have said Airbus is aiming for as many as 1,200 orders.

Airbus said it had reached a total of 1,112 plane orders between January and September, or a net total of 1,062 orders after adjusting for cancellations.

It delivered 445 aircraft in the first nine months.

The September tally includes previously announced orders for 18 A-350-1000 aircraft from British Airways and 62 narrowbody jets from Spanish sister airline Vueling.

Airbus also confirmed orders for 30 A-321 narrowbody jets from Delta Air Lines, but its breakdown also showed that the United States airline had canceled orders for 12 smaller planes originally bought by Northwest, which Delta acquired in 2008.

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