Boeing is reported to be very close to approving a re-vamp of its hugely popular 777 long haul aircraft.
The modified aircraft, expected to be called the 777X, will go wing to wing with the A350-1000 from rival Airbus.
British Airways, a long term 777 customer, has just announced an order for 18 of the Airbus aircraft.
The Airbus 350-1000 is the long range version of the new A350 that also competes with the 787 Dreamliner.
Boeing is expected to respond in what looks like becoming a battle for supremacy in the lucrative mini-jumbo market.
The global market for these long haul twin engined aircraft is worth 100s of billions of dollars over the coming years as airlines replace their older aircraft.
Boeing will be keen not to let Airbus make too many inroads into this market.
Full specifications and components for the 777X are not yet known although it is expected to take advantage of many of the innovations seen in the Dreamliner.
Image below – Airbus A350-1000 © Graham Charles Edwards – Airline Finder