PARIS, FRANCE — Emirates' boss sir Tim Clark proposes engine upgrade and design overhaul for Airbus' superjumbo.

Emirates Airline's President, Sir Tim Clark, has reaffirmed his persistent advocacy for Airbus to remodel their A380 with next-generation engines, contending such a change could result in an appreciable fuel efficiency increase of up to 25%.

Speaking on June 16th at the Paris Air Forum, Clark underscored the somewhat antiquated status of the engines presently used in the A380 fleet, which include the Engine Alliance GP7200 and Rolls-Royce Trent 900, both of which had their origins in the 1990s.

Clark accentuated the potential of an advanced engine like the Rolls-Royce UltraFan, highlighting its transformative potential for the A380: “Implementing the UltraFan could slash fuel consumption and emissions by a quarter, which is a notably impressive feat.”

On April 24th, Rolls-Royce debuted their UltraFan demonstrator, viewing its structural design as a prospective powerhouse for future narrow- and wide-body planes requiring between 25,000lb (111kN) and 100,000lb of thrust. To compare, the Trent 900's output stands at 84,000lb.

Despite its age, the A380 remains a favourite among travellers, with 87 of Emirates' 116-strong fleet in operation last week, achieving an 82% load factor. Clark envisages an A380 equipped with UltraFan engines would offer a "revolutionary shift" in fuel efficiency.

Furthermore, Clark opined that other aerodynamic enhancements, a transition to a high-wing arrangement to accommodate UltraFan's larger fans, would be beneficial. "I've spent considerable time pondering the potential alterations," he noted.

Clark mentioned his suggestions might appear as mere wishful thinking, but emphasized the need to stimulate discussions, arguing that a super-capacity aircraft might be the only viable solution for airports grappling with limited slots, especially in light of anticipated future passenger growth.

However, Airbus has so far responded to Clark’s urgings with dismissive humour: “They always laugh at me,” he admits. “I might be the maverick here – but I'm merely stating my insights – it's their choice how they want to respond to that.”

He concluded by arguing that advances in digital design and materials technology since the all-metal A380's inception "should provide Airbus with a reasonable opportunity to create something genuinely captivating."