The production of Boeing’s 737 Max aircraft was temporarily put on hold from January this year following two deadly air crashes due to technical issues with the plane’s flight control systems.

Adding to the already troubled 737 Max order book is the grounding of aircraft due to air travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak, causing doubts concerning its survival.

Aerospace Technology has conducted a poll to assess whether readers believe the Boeing 737 Max will survive the crisis caused by COVID-19.

Analysis of the poll results shows that the chances are equal for survival or failure of Boeing 737 Max, as 50% of the respondents voted that the model will survive the COVID-19 pandemic, while another 50% opined otherwise.

737 Max survival during COVID-19

The analysis is based on 596 responses received between 04 May and 01 June.

Boeing 737 Max: COVID-19 pandemic adds to the troubles

Boeing reported a loss of $641m in the first quarter of 2020 owing to the travel bans amid the COVID-19 outbreak and production halt including that of 737 Max.

The company resumed production of the 737 Max at a lower rate in May and plans to gradually ramp up production to 31 a month in 2021.

Order cancellations of the 737 Max aircraft, however, have increased as air travel is not expected to revive fully for a while amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

737 Max order cancellations could increase, predicts GlobalData

Boeing received 281 cancellations of the aircraft in 2020. The cancellations may only worsen in the next few months as airlines may be vary of the long-term impact of the pandemic, according to GlobalData.

Airlines will try to trim their fleet due to the decline in air travel, with an expected drop of 1.2 billion travellers and $160bn to $253bn in revenue losses, says GlobalData.

The technical issues will only make the 737 Max a target for cancellation irrespective of the COVID-19 pandemic or air travel bans.