According to this tweet from Jon Ostrower, Delta is currently proposing a deal to Boeing that would see them send all of their 91 717-200s to Boeing in exchange for 100 brand new 737 MAX. Given that multiple leasing companies have cancelled their orders for the MAX, this may be an opportunity for Boeing to prevent pumping whitetails out of their factories once their delivery slots roll around.
Going beyond the practical aspects, let’s look at some of the more interesting implications and questions arising from this proposal:
A new Boeing 737 MAX may have a lower market value during these tumultuous times than a 717-200, which is no spring chicken.
Delta eschewed the 737 MAX during their narrowbody ordering process, what will be the place of the 737 MAX in their fleet? If there is no place, possibility 3 may apply.
Will Delta fly the 737 MAX they take delivery of? Or are they trying to pick up some 2022-2024 delivery slots for next to nothing (less than 1 717-200 each) then flip them when the time is right? All of the majors have talked about right-sizing their operations for a post-COVID world and this may be a way for them to pocket a hefty gain on 717 disposals once market value for commercial aircraft recovers.
If you can think of any other implications or thoughts, feel free to add something below!