While the importance of brand loyalty in terms of engine choice has lost much of its significance due to the move away from in-house overhaul capabilities, the selection of the airframe/airframe combination continues to have an effect on residual values.
British Airways has retired its last B767-300ER which are powered by Rolls-Royce engines. BA has operated the B767-300ER for some 28 years but was one of only two customers who selected the Rolls-Royce engine. British Airways placed a total of five orders for the Rolls powered B767 between 1987 and 1997 for a total of 28 aircraft. The only other customer for the Rolls-Royce powered B767-300ER was China Yunnan Airlines. China Yunnan ordered the aircraft in 1995 but as a replacement for the B757s that it originally ordered. Citing an increase in traffic, the larger B767 was needed but because of cancellation penalties that were in effect with Boeing and Rolls-Royce, China Yunnan had to order the aircraft with Rolls-Royce engines. Therefore the only “willing” customer for the Rolls powered B767 was British Airways. With so few of the 583 B767-300ER orders being for the Rolls engine, values of the specific airframe engine combination have always suffered. The lack of orders for the Rolls engine was not necessarily a reflection of its technical capability or reliability but stems more from its design. The RB211 and Trent have always featured a three shaft system and this has added to the weight of the engine and therefore the aircraft. With no change in the MTOW of the B767, the heavier weight of the RB211-524G meant that less payload could be carried and that the fuel consumption is higher when compared to the CF6 or PW4000 powerplants. Some of the BA aircraft were successfully marketed and four are currently operated by Eastern Airlines of the US, always a good location to place aging aircraft. An ex-China Yunnan Rolls powered B767 is operated by Russian operator, Royal Flight. Out of the 31 that were built only five remain in service. Values of the RB211 powered B767 have been significantly lower than other B767s by some 30-40 percent. The values of other specific airframe/engine combinations continue to suffer not least the PW6000 powered A318s. Even where a particular engine powers the majority of a specific airframe this does not necessarily mean that values will be the same as for other engine types. The cost of overhauling the engines becomes particularly important for operators as the aircraft ages and a higher than average cost of overhaul can lead to early demise. The marketing strategy of engine manufacturers can differ with some offering a lower price for installed engines and then charging more for spares and overhauls while others charge a higher price for installed engines and a lower price for spares and overhauls with more independent overhaul facilities.